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  • policy on biting?

    (Geared towards mobiles, but anyone can answer)
    Do you have a written policy on biting? Meaning, if a dog bites you and you need medical attention, is it at the owner's expense? Do you request that the owner pay for it?

  • #2
    i groom in a shop and i figure it goes along with the job -- eg. thats a risk i take. but at another place i worked the woman charged customers $10. a bite!!

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    • #3
      Here In Arizona

      My second month here, Dec 1999 I did two cute Yorkies...then asked to do grandmas' dog. Welll it was Not used to grooming and bit the air along with my and some other area of my left hand. They were Not sympathetic on the 17th day of Dec. That is bonus month as you know. I was just starting and had to stop until Jan.! I called a lawyer and he got them to pay thru homeowners policy. Dog owner said I was not on his propertry, but in the street. Lawyer said the dog is the extension of the owner and responsible even tho I am mobile. Insursnce settled and paid Emergency [email protected] hospital. No other money for loss. Being new, I could not prove losses even tho' booked.Lawyer fee included. He must have known the law and that he would win. In Cal. the dog was in quarantine, so that was a no brainer.Call a lawyer and ask. We have lawyers all over tv and phone books here for Phoenix area.By the way....How do you all handle Air Biters. In a few days i will have the Groomers' Helper!!!! Yeah.

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      • #4
        Wise acker

        I thought, I don't bite, so no policy, hee hee. But I just don't groom biters. A couple potential snappers have made it in my list, but the groomers helper and caution help. There was a recent law regarding Kennel Helpers that left the liability to the pet professional, as that is part of the job hazard. The exception was if the owner knew the dog was a biter and was asked but not told honestly. Makes is important to ask if the dog has ever bitten before or tried to bite. If they say yes, though, and you still groom the dog, it would be on you.

        Good for mustluvdogs, both that you got that covered, and that you are getting a Groomers Helper.
        Money will buy you a pretty good dog but it won't buy the wag of it's tail.

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        • #5
          I thought that we couldn't charge them. It is an assumed risk on our parts as the professional.
          Scratch a dog and you'll find a permanent job. ~Franklin P. Jones

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          • #6
            Good thread RevWind!

            Originally posted by Arrooh View Post
            I thought, I don't bite, so no policy, hee hee. But I just don't groom biters. A couple potential snappers have made it in my list, but the groomers helper and caution help. There was a recent law regarding Kennel Helpers that left the liability to the pet professional, as that is part of the job hazard. The exception was if the owner knew the dog was a biter and was asked but not told honestly. Makes is important to ask if the dog has ever bitten before or tried to bite. If they say yes, though, and you still groom the dog, it would be on you.

            Good for mustluvdogs, both that you got that covered, and that you are getting a Groomers Helper.
            Arrooh, you're so wise, I always love your posts....And yes, I'm partial. Ok, so I've had this actually happen. I always ask a first time client all info about their dog - whether biter, aggressive with people, animals, etc. I got all no's, he's a sweetheart, never would hurt a flea, been to many groomer's before, never had a complaint - with this particular dog....Well a few minutes after the owner left, Hyde showed his face and I got bit & he was not playing around either - OUCH! I imediately called her back her up and asked her to come get the dog. I hate, when things like this happen, and I hate not being able to groom a dog. But I too, assume the responsibility as mine if I get bit while grooming. When this owner came to pick up her dog, she smurked and said it was worth a try. Come to realize after the fact, this dog had bitten numerous groomers. I probably should've made a bigger deal about it, just so no other groomer would get bit in the future by him, but I didn't. I have poor judgement when it's come to these situations. I think that's why if you're not going to assume the responsibility you should definitely have it in writing and your clients should know about it. Otherwise, the whole lawyer thing could maybe get messy. And I avoided that alternative becuase of it. Maybe if I had something in writing about her assuming responsibility if I got bit she would never have left him there and the bite would've been prevented. Something to think about for sure!

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            • #7
              We are the professionals.

              Dear Mil,

              We are supposed to know how to handle and groom dogs without getting hurt or hurting them. However that is easier said then done. That is why we are "INSURED"!!!

              When we take on the job of grooming a pet it is our responsibility to get all the info on the pet we can get. Ask the questions like:

              1. Has your pet ever bitten anyone?
              2. Is your pet agressive with other animals?
              3. Is you pet posessive of his food or toys?
              4. How does he react for his bath when you (the customer) bath them?
              5. Does he have a problem when you have his nails clipped?

              We are expected to be the professionals. Treat every dog like they have the potential to bite. Treat every dog like they are kennel-shy. Never let your guard down.

              We have the right to refuse to groom a pet we believe will be a danger to us.

              If the owner knew that their pet was agressive and a biter and had bitten other groomers before and they lied to you, (and you could prove it) then and only then would they be liable for a bite.

              The fact that the homeowners insurance paid for it is because it was a "Nuisance Case" and they settled rather then litigate. They raised the homeowners insurance premiums on the customer anyway to recoup their monies.

              Remember it is better to be safe then sorry. Evaluate a new dog first. The owner might not have insurance and the shop you work at might not have insurance. Then what will you do?

              Ask the owner to hang around for a few minutes while you evaluate a new groom dog. Hook them up (to the Groomers Helper of course). Run a comb thru their beard. Clip a few nails. Finger pluck some ear hairs. Put them in a kennel with a lead hanging out and see if they let you get them out. When you know they have passed these few evaluations let the owner leave. If they fail one or all you just might want to send them to your competition. Just kidding.

              Chuck

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              • #8
                No insurance at an employer?

                Chuck - I don't know about other states but as far as Connecticut is concerned it is illegal NOT to have Workers' compensation coverage, even if you only have one employee. As they are the owners of the business and you must do things "their way" handling etc. They are liable if you should be injured. Our boss didn't like us using the groomer's helper she thought it was hurting the dog. I know I read another post where individual groomers in california, where on their own financially should they get hurt by a dog.

                I certainly wouldn't sue a customer if the dog has never biten before an they didn't know it was agressive, but we did have a guy once that we asked the specific question if his dog was ever bad for anything or ever bit and got a big NO. Didn't like nails done, boss put on an E- collar dog went nuts. When we took him off the table he lunged at my bosses face but luckily he had an-E collar on and we made the owner take it off when he got there. When the guy picked him up he said. Oh I was hoping you'd have better luck then we have at home GRRRRRR!!!! So if this dog ripped my arm of I might try to hold him liable. What a ---------.
                Last edited by DAPER DAWG; 03-07-07, 03:08 PM.

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                • #9
                  Anyone can sue for anything.

                  Dawg,

                  We had a dog hurt a groomer and found out from the vet that the owner knew that they had an aggressive dog. It bit the vet. It bit the owner. It bit the neighbors child.

                  This person told us that his dog was the nicesest dog in the world and would never hurt a flea. He lied and was found guilty and paid triple damages. It cost him over $10,000 for his lie.

                  If you know of a device that can protect you from being bitten and your owner knows of it but denies you the use of it and you are bitten. You have them under the bus, literally. Their goose is cooked. Imagine if the dog ripped your arm off because you couldn't protect yourself because the owner denied you the use of the Groomers Helper.

                  That is gross negligence and your owner is liable for "Pain and Suffering", "Loss of Consortium", (Hope I spelled that right), and anything else you can pile on them. You would virtually own his shop when the lawyers were finished with him. Could you imagine if you worked for a cab company and they did not allow you to use the seat belts.

                  This is somthing that is not covered by Workmans Comp. Only your injuries are covered. Then state disability coveres your loss of work, etc. But anyone can sue anyone for anything and if my boss denied me the use of a protective device and I was bitten because I could not protect myself I would sue the living ---- out of them over and above Workmans Comp and Disability I would go after them and their insurance company with a vengence especially if I was seriously hurt and could not or did not want to continue my chosen profession.

                  We really do not think of these things until they happen. So tell your bosses that 50,000 dogs a day are groomed on the Groomers Helper and over 30,000,000, that's million groomings have been performed with the Groomers Helper and not one report of an injured Groomer or Pet. This can be verified with our Insurance Agent, Gibson-Governer. Ask them what they have to loose by letting you use the Helper? Then ask them what they have to loose if they do not let you use it!

                  Chuck

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                  • #10
                    Aw shucks,

                    Originally posted by milhasavilla View Post
                    Arrooh, you're so wise, I always love your posts....And yes, I'm partial.
                    Thanks. I'm just a groomer trying to get it all figured out like most everyone on this board.

                    Thanks Chuck for your wording Your Goose is Cooked, lol, hadn't heard that in a while. I had a little so and so manager take and hide my Groomers Helper twice in the week that I could tolerate working under her. I was furious. I insisted on useing it and would have contacted OSHA if I could not. She said it looked cruel through the window. I love being on my own. Every customer I have understands and appreciates the Groomers Helper from the lack of falling dogs, non trachea choking, non twirling, and their favorite groomer not taking a chance on getting bit. I have only a few that need the extra's but sure am grateful for the deluxe when needed.
                    Money will buy you a pretty good dog but it won't buy the wag of it's tail.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by milhasavilla View Post
                      Hyde showed his face and I got bit & he was not playing around either - OUCH! I imediately called her back her up and asked her to come get the dog. I hate, when things like this happen, and I hate not being able to groom a dog. But I too, assume the responsibility as mine if I get bit while grooming. When this owner came to pick up her dog, she smurked and said it was worth a try.
                      I would have come UNGLUED. That is your bread and butter she was PLAYING with like some kind of game! Nerve damage can cost you your livelyhood, I can't believe she did that to you! I would love to have seen her face had she filled out a form saying "Bites are $50 for EACH bite," LOL.

                      Ooo, that just burns me up!

                      Tammy in Utah
                      Groomers Helper Affiliate

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Arrooh View Post
                        I had a little so and so manager take and hide my Groomers Helper twice in the week that I could tolerate working under her. I was furious. I insisted on useing it and would have contacted OSHA if I could not. She said it looked cruel through the window.

                        That person sounds like a jealous idiot. Who would do something like that if they weren't envious that you have it? It looks "cruel" through the window?

                        See, that's what I just don't get. The Groomers Helper is so small, so unobrustive, no owner would even notice. It's not like you hook the dog up as tightly as you can and then jack up the grooming arm. Some people frustrate the crud out of me!

                        Tammy in Utah
                        Groomers Helper Affiliate

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                        • #13
                          I ask, but usually they will lie if they know the dog is bad, so I tell them, "If the dog acts aggressive towards me or anyone in this building, it will not be groomed and you are to pick him/her up immediately". End of discussion

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                          • #14
                            I tell everyone I have a $20 per bite charge if I get a strange feeling about their dog or if they answer questions in a way which leads me to believe their dog my have an issue they aren't being forthcoming about. I have only charged it once, however. I have, though, had some people decide not to book with me after i told them this. I wonder why.

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                            • #15
                              Chuck

                              Apparently there are some clueless business owners and pet owners out there who think the GH is a device of torture instead of a device of safety. Have you thought about making a "educational" poster that could be hung in the lobby of a business to reassure customers that their animals are NOT being subjected to weird experiments...lol... Just a thought!
                              SheilaB from SC

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