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Yorkshire Terrier in show coat. Isolated on a white background

What is the Best Way to Detangle Yorkie Hair?

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A cute Yorkie with long floor-length hair is amazing and picture-perfect until their hair becomes detangled or matted.

It drives you crazy and you may even start rethinking the whole dog parenting idea. If it’s any consolation, you’re not alone in this. This Quora user and other Yorkie moms are in the same boat with you and I have a solution.

In this article, I’ll give a detailed answer to the question – what is the best way to detangle Yorkie hair? 

A Step-to-Step Guide to Detangle Your Yorkie’s Hair 

The best way to do this is to groom your Yorkie and make it a bath day. I call it “spa day” and groom all 4 of my dogs that day.

Here are the steps I follow to detangle my Yorkie’s hair. 

woman in yellow shirt holding a dog slicker brush and a Yorkshire terrier

1. Gather Your Tools

The last thing you want is to realize that you can’t locate your detangler when your Yorkie is soaking wet. Therefore, take a few minutes and get all your tools ready before starting. 

Here is what you need: 

  • A pin brush or a slicker brush
  • A mat splitting tool 
  • A detangling tool
  • A steel comb

2. Get Dog Shampoo and Conditioner 

One thing to keep in mind is that your Yorkie’s hair texture is very similar to your hair. Therefore, after detangling, it will need a deep wash with the right products. 

I love using this Aloe & Oatmeal Cucumber Melon Shampoo because my Yorkie has slightly sensitive skin. The shampoo smells really great, and it relaxes my Yorkie, so no more bath fights. The only precaution to take is to ensure that the shampoo doesn’t go inside your doggie’s eyes because it’s not completely tear-free thanks to all its medicinal properties. 

For the conditioner, I recommend The Stuff. Not only does it leave your dog clean, but it also helps with the tangles. The conditioner also has silicon that repels dirt and urine, so your Yorkie’s coat will remain clean for a long time. 

Don’t bathe them yet. Just make sure you have all your tools and supplies ready. Have a few towels ready too.

3. Locate the Tangles 

This may seem unnecessary, but it’s actually very important. If you’re rough on the matted parts of your dog’s hair, it’s going to be painful, and they’ll relate the whole experience with the discomfort. 

4. Apply the Detangler 

The biggest mistake you can ever make when detangling your Yorkie’s hair is trying to fix it when it’s dry. It’s going to hurt and you’re not going to achieve any results. 

Apply a generous amount of the detangler on your doggie’s matted hair to soften it and free the mats. My go detangler is the detangling shine spray from Biosilk. It contains natural ingredients that reduce the stress for your dog by making brushing bearable. 

5. Use Your Hands to Detangle the Matted Hair 

I know this sounds very tedious, but going straight to the comb can be very painful for your pooch. Be patient and try your best to sort out the mats by hand until you’re sure they’re ready to be brushed without too much pulling. 

6. Brush the Tangled Hair 

After detangling the mats with your hands, divide the mats into the smallest portion possible and brush through each portion. This will make your work easier, and it will significantly reduce the pain for your Yorkie. 

If you don’t have a slicker brush, get this one from Flying Pawfect. It gives your dog a calming and relaxing massage as you brush through their mats. The brush is designed with 50% longer and softer pins than other slicker brushes. 

7. Bathe Your Yorkie

The last step is to bathe your Yorkie; it will help them relax after all the mats removing ordeal. Before you soak your Yorkie in water, ensure that they’re no tangles left in their hair because water will make them worse. 

Remember to use quality shampoo and conditioner to protect your Yorkie’s coat and hair. Using the right products is what gives your Yorkie that shiny coat. It also affects your Yorkie’s hair thickness, so you don’t want to compromise. 

What If the Tangles Don’t Come Out? 

If you try everything and the tangles won’t come out, avoid the temptation of cutting them out with scissors. The mats can be very close to your pet’s skin, so it’s easy to cut them in the process. 

smiling female dog groomer grooming a Yorkshire Terrier

The best option at this point is to book an appointment with a groomer to deal with the matting. If the matting is too bad, the groomer may recommend a full-body shave and a few tips to prevent the issue from happening again in the future. We have tips on how to find a good dog groomer.

I know a body shave isn’t what you want to hear, because you may be concerned about whether their hair will grow back or not. Well, the hair will grow back, and we even have a few tips on how to make your Yorkie’s hair grow faster. 

Frequently Asked Questions on Detangling Yorkie’s Matted Hair 

Here are the common questions people ask about detangling a Yorkie’s hair. 

Can I use my human detangler on my Yorkie?

No, it’s not advisable to use your detangler on your Yorkie. Although a Yorkie’s hair looks like human hair, they’re other factors to consider. For example, your pH and your dog’s pH are not the same; dogs require products with a high pH like 6.5-7. Therefore, using your detangler on your dog may get the job done, but it will leave their skin irritated.

Will coconut oil detangle dog hair?

Yes, like human hair, coconut oil can make the process of detangling your dog’s hair easier. This is a great option when you don’t have time to bathe your Yorkie but still need to sort out those mats. Massage coconut oil (preferably organic to avoid any allergies) on your dog’s matted hair, and once the mats are soft, detangle them with your hand and then a slicker brush. 

Do detangling sprays work for dogs?

Yes, detangler sprays work. They really come in handy for softening the dog’s mats, making the detangling easy. Also, most detanglers have natural ingredients that do more than detangle your dog’s hair. They nourish your dog’s hair and leave it shiny and beautiful. 

How to Detangle a Yorkie’s Matted Hair (Final Words)

It’s so frustrating when your Yorkie’s hair tangles – it’s not pretty to watch, and it can also lead to itching and other unpleasant health conditions. However, it can be fixed by using the steps we shared in this blog post. 

Although you can avoid matting by regularly brushing your Yorkie’s hair, with their long hair it’s normal to miss some spots. Just ensure you act on it when you see it, and if it’s too hard for you, take them to the groomer. 

What do you use to detangle your Yorkie’s hair and how often do you brush them?

Cathy signature with Yorkie drawing

Cathy Bendzunas with yorkie and yorkie mix

Cathy Bendzunas

Dog Blogger

I have always loved Yorkies and got my first one when I was 19. I bred and showed them back in the 80’s. Though I love other breeds too, Yorkshire Terriers will always be my first love. I have lived and worked with dogs all my life.

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