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Groomer Pet Peeves
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Groomer Pet Peeves

I've been in the grooming business for nearly a decade and I love working with animals. I have built many meaningful relationships with pets and pet parents alike. unfortunately, there are difficult people out there that whether they realize it or not, are making the job harder for their groomers. I have compiled a list of the worst groomer pet peeves to help educate pet parents on proper grooming client etiquette.

One of the most obnoxious things a client can do is rush and badger a groomer. We generally will give the client a time frame, and take down a number so we can CALL when the groom is completed. Groomers typically take two or three dogs at a time and rotate out. While one dog has been prepped and bathed, another is started while the first finishes drying. This way more dogs can get started and worked on, and the dogs have time to take breaks so they don't over stress.

Nine times out ten, a groomer is running behind because of events that are out of their control. Some instances include: Difficult or aggressive dogs, dematting, or complicated haircuts, and dogs that have a longer drying time because they don't tolerate the dryer. A dog may poop and pee on themselves and have to be re-bathed. All the while, trying to answer phone calls, and check in and out other dogs.

Please please please DO NOT show up early, especially if you see your groomer working on your dog. All you are going to do is excite and distract your dog making it take longer to finish, difficult for the groomer, and making it a recipe for a nick, cut, or scrape. Groomers have a stressful enough job that they do not need clientele tapping their feet and putting unnecessary pressure and stress on both the dog and the groomer.

Groomers especially hate it when prospective clients compare the price of a groom to the price of a "human" haircut and style. This Should be a no brainer. Of course a pet groom costs more. A hair stylist doesn't have to rake out undercoat and mats out of your head, pin you down to cut your nails, deal with you pooping and peeing all over, you don't get your butt glands squeezed, and I hope to God you don't turn zombie apocalyptic and try to bite your stylist. Groomers have to pay out of pocket to get their tools sharpened. If your dog is matted, expect to pay more because matted dogs dull blades, and quickly. Grooming is not just barks and bubbles. It is a lot of work, and I feel like I speak for most groomers when I say we are under appreciated. Please tip your groomer, because they deal with a lot more than a stylist.

I understand that there are a lot of rescued and abused dogs out there that are skittish and have "trust" issues. On the other hand, I also know that there are a lot of spoiled, pampered pocket pets that have never been trained, disciplined, or had boundaries set. Please do not wait until your puppy is matted and nine months old to bring your dog in to be groomed. Your dog will fight, pull, and cry making it a nightmare for both parties. The sooner you bring your puppy in, the better. I've been grooming long enough to know when a dog is scared, and when it is just being difficult.

I do not baby and coddle difficult dogs. I will use the appropriate restraining tools and techniques to get what I need done. Please take responsibility for your pets actions, and don't blame their behavior on the groomer. If your groomer tells you that they were bitten by your dog; don't rebuttal with, "Well what did you do to him?!" The obvious answer to that question is the proper steps to complete a groom. This is why you take a dog to the groomer, because YOU don't want to do it yourself. Sometimes dogs are nervous and scared, and sometimes they are difficult jerks. Please take responsibility.

The last pet peeve has to do with matting. I hear all the time that someone is "trying" a different groomer because the last one took the dog too short. There isn't a groomer in the world that wants your dog to look stupid, but sometimes we have to do what's best for the pet regardless of the haircut the owner wants. Groomers know when matting is too tight and has to be shaved out, and we know when we can brush and demat without too much discomfort. I will not pin down and torture an animal by brushing out severe mats because the owner doesn't want to keep up on regular routine maintenance. Most other groomers won't either.

We also don't like being held responsible for skin infections, and irritation due to the matting. We find all kinds of things under the matting ranging from bruising and abscessed sticks and twigs in-bedded in the skin, to candy that the hair has grown over and matted around. Don't get mad at your groomer because you neglected your dog for months and now they have a skin condition. Matting doesn't happen over night. It takes weeks and months. If your dog is in pretty good shape, a groomer can do whatever haircut you want, if not, then the needs of the pet comes before yours.

These are probably the things that irritate groomers the most, although most will never tell you. If you are guilty of one or more of these pet peeves then I strongly suggest you reflect on your actions and see what you can change for the better. If you are dead set in your ways...then you should probably learn to groom your pet yourself.


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