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Thread: Advice Please

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
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    144

    Default Advice Please

    Situation: I am hb, sole proprietor, have been in business just over a year. Small client list, but very loyal. Getting a new knee end of this month, which means a shut down of 2 months for sure. Have packed my schedule these last few days and have told my clients about the surgery.
    Questions: Anyone with experience of this type surgery? How long were you out of commission? Dr had said 2-3 months.
    What would you tell clients about grooming needs while you were closed? I will (with owners' permission) take the fluffies down very tight to keep them as good as possible for as long as possible, but what if I can't start back up in 2 months? Do I give them a one time pass to go elsewhere? I worry about them cuz some of my clients can't figure out how to keep the eye boogers at bay, much less how to work a comb, and more than 8 weeks could be miserable for these little guys.
    What about the many bathe/deshed lab types who come to me every 4 weeks?
    My 22 year old daughter is home and could help out. What is your opinion of starting to bring clients back at 2 months, have her bathe and then remain at table for any control issues while I groom? Never been in a shop that had a bather, but was thinking that was kind of how it worked (although I'm guessing the bather doesn't usually stand at the grooming table for the duration of the groom!)
    Any thoughts or suggestions appreciated, thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Everywhere
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    8,089

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    I have not had a knee replacement (surgeries yes though). With invasive surgery (not orthoscoptic) I was down 2 weeks......needed help to carry dogs from one location to the other but I could sit and groom. My stepfather had both knees replaced at the same time.....within a month he was back out playing golf.
    Ain't always easy to stand up for what is right.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    346

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    I have had multiple knee surgeries, but no replacement yet (too young). Last surgery was an invasive, intense ligament repair, tendon repair, and general "clean out". I was supposed to be out 6-8weeks but had a complication that had me out of work for a full 3 months, with weight restrictions for lifting and pulling (dogs pulling me) that is steadily increasing but is still slightly restricted over 6 months later. I pray your surgery goes smoothly and you don't have the same issues I did. My doctor did tell me that replacements don't tend to be as hard, so hopefully that is true for you.
    But... That being said, I told my clients I would be back in the 6-8weeks and they were very upset when I was still not back, and couldn't take the big dogs. So give your clients a good heads up, and see if you can line up some help once you do get back to work. If you have someone that can work as your assistant when you are recovered enough, it will make your life much easier and get you back to work sooner without risking hurting yourself. Get yourself a nice stool to work on, and your assistant would really only have to lift dogs for you and walk them to and from if needed if your knee can't handle the pulling right away. You may not even need any help, but better to have someone in mind and available just in case. Don't over work yourself when you do start up again. I know it was very tempting for me to just try and power through as many dogs as I could so my clients were at least getting back to me, but you will most likely be slower when you fist get back to work, both physically and mentally from having the time off.
    As far as a free pass to go elsewhere, I would almost have to say yes, just in case you aren't back to work in the time that they need you. You don't necessarily have to recommend another groomer, but if they go somewhere else while you are out there is not much you can do about that. If you keep good records, just call the people you haven't seen to reassure them you are back and invite them to make an appointment.

    Best of luck to you, hopefully you have an easy surgery amd quick recovery!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Southern California
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    3,706

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    I do not have any experience with knees, but I want to wish you the very best .. take it easy and let your knee tell you when enough is enough.
    Debbie
    There's always room for another rose in the garden.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    144

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    Thank you for the well wishes. At 57 I am "young" for a replacement, but quality of life is and should be an issue. Not to scare you kaida, but according to my surgeon, the arthritis is probably a result of the knee surgery (minor meniscus repair) he performed a decade ago. Heard several others tell similar stories. Not cool.
    Sincerely thinking I can groom the smaller, easier ones with daughter's help by 8 weeks, but that being said, maybe I should practice sitting to groom. I'm a stalker. Will keep in mind the advice as I talk with clients this week, as I certainly don't want to alienate any of them.
    On a lovely note, had one in last Saturday (works with my surgeon) who told me to make the dog as short as I need to . They don't want anyone else grooming their dog. So sweet!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Michigan
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    No worries, there is no scare. I am fully aware that the first surgery started arthritis and generally chronic issues. My other knee has been feeling like the first for a few years now (chronic pain, popping, cracking, giving out and even sliding out of place once in a while), but I refuse to let them open that one up until I can't function with it. I was told I have a defect in the groove of the femur that causes the knee cap to slide too far over. I have always been very active so the more it moves the more damage is done over time. It is only a matter of time before they have to give me a new knee. Surgen says he hates doing this many surgeries on essentially the same thing, but no insurance company would ever consider allowing replacement on someone in their 20s or 30s unless it was completely non-functioning without it.
    Anyway, I am glad you have someone that could help you when you get back to it. Again I send you my best wishes for a full fast recovery!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
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    144

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    Well new knee is one week old. Thanks to an inability to take any of the stronger pain meds, I feel about 20 years older at the moment, but am sure that will improve.
    My last customer before the surgery handed me a card from his former secretary and said she asked him to pass along the offer to fill in for me while I am unable to groom! We live about 15 miles apart, so there is no intent to 'poach' in the offer. I have never met her, and am overwhelmed at her kindness! Plan to contact her this week-I started my one poodle prior to surgery but was unable to finish, so I will ask her to regroom him for me. And much as I want to hope to be able to do some of the easier dogs in 2 months, for a few of my banana brushed pets, that's a long time to go. Load off my mind! Groomers rock!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    346

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    Im sorry you feel poopy at the moment. It will get better as time goes. So sweet that you got an offer like that, such kindness! Relax and heal! Get well soon!!

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