It’s best to try and remove burrs as soon as they appear. The longer you wait, the deeper the burr will embed itself. Waiting until you get home to deal with the problem will result in the burr getting pressed further into the coat as the pet rubs or rests against a car seat or your leg.
Try Fingers First
Often, burrs attach to the ends of hairs, so if your pet is patient and won’t squirm or try to run away, you can carefully and gently remove the burr a few strands of hair at a time. If you have a tweezers on hand, use this to help move the hairs.
You can try crushing the burr with pliers to help break up the burr before you use a slicker brush to remove loose particles. Avoid brushing over an area where you know a stubborn burr has already lodged. This will pull the hair and hurt the animal.
If you have succors on hand and a burr has attached to the ends of hairs, a quick snip underneath the burr may be all you need.
Don’t wet down the area to try and isolate the burr or make it easier to grasp. Getting a burr wet will cause the hair to shrink and cling more tightly to the burr, increasing your problem. Even if you see a bit of blood, remove the burr first, then wash the wound with water. If the problem persists, try lubricating the area with vegetable oil before brushing.
Avoid places with many plants that may contain stickers, especially if your pet has long hair. If your pet’s favorite place tends to have these types of plants, consider a trim or trip to the groomer before an outing or the outdoor season begins. Look for a pet-friendly hair detangler at your local pet store and carry that if you know this will be a recurring problem.
By Sarah Zumhofe