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Staff Infections

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  • Staff Infections

    A client of mind has a Terrier that has been coming to me for over 6 years. The dog was last groomed by me just before Thanksgiving. They prebooked a Christmas appoinment and cancelled that saying they would call after new years. The owners of this dog always bring her on time, are happy with the grooms but the dog has always had little dry patches and I have just succeeded in getting it cleared up last summer. They do not wash the dog for the 6 weeks between groomings and she is allowed to run freely in the yard. With the last appointment at Thanksgiving the dog had the crusty patches again so I gave the owner a free bottle of medicated and he promised to care for her.

    I have repeatedly left several messages on their answering machine telling them its time for her appointment but no response. This was so unlike them that I finally called the man at work today. He tells me that they have been battling a STAPH infection since the dog came to me. I said 'I surely hope you are not thinking she contracted it here?" He just answered with "The vet said he did not know"!!!

    I am so immaculate at my salon, disinfecting, cleaning. What causes staff and what is the percentage of chance the dog contracted it at my salon?

  • #2
    Percent is high, but it is also high the contracted it from the home, the yard, etc. Staphoccolcal infections are generally found in animals that already have an infection that went untreated, it goes through the bloodstream. In humans we see it as a radiating red line coming away from the infection.

    As a groomer her are some causes:
    1. If the dog was in contact with another dog who had it. It can be airborne but generally is spread by direct contact.
    2. If you cut the dog, did not tell the owner and it went untreated.
    3. The dog had open sores and you did not sanitize your equipment prior to use on pet.

    A vet, can not tell where it came from they can only give an idea of how long the dog has been sick. To insinuate that it came from the groomer is "opening a can of liability". I would ask who the vet is and what made the owner feel as though it came from you.


    • #3
      I'm Sorry for that to happend,
      If you go to google and search for staph dogs you will find a lot of information.
      I hope it makes you feel better


      • #4
        Thank you both. Gracy Rose, The dog did not have any of the three things you mentioned above happen. Everything is sanitized between each groom and the dog was taken home immediately after the groom was completed in November. I have been treating this dog since it was a puppy. I do not know who the vet is and am extremely apprehensive to inquire.

        If these people do not bring Molly back then I know that they are blaming me. Just the fact that they ignored all phone messages for the last 3 weeks has made me very suspicious, With the news today I am replaying my grooming procedures over and over. I cannot for the life of me think of anything I did that would cause this. This dog is always in and out in 2 hours.

        Thank you for all the information.


        • #5
          I was told by a docter that staff germs are present every where. So the dog could have gotten it anywhere. But if the dog had a lot of hair it can trap moisture which is a breeding ground for staff so they just multiply. So when it builds up like that it can cause a staff infection.


          • #6
            Actually, the dog probably didn't get a staph infection in your shop. Staph is the most common bacteria found on dog skin. It's always there, and you didn't do anything to cause it.

            Bacterial skin infections are almost always secondary to some other skin problem. Flea bites, hormonal problems, yeast and other fungal infections or immune system disorders. Trauma can also be a contributing factor; those hot spots that dogs cause themselves by chewing at flea bites are usually staph infections.

            The fact that the dog has had crusty patches in the past points to something else going on that led to the staph infection.

            Even if the owner blames you, don't blame yourself. You didn't cause it.


            • #7
              I love my vet, she told me that every living thing has staph. When it gets infected, she said "the skin is throwing a party" LOL

              A beautiful white sch that comes in got a staph infection just by swimming in a near by lake this last summer. He still has naked spots were his hair has not grown back. Poor thing.

              I wouldnt worry. People always want to blame someone else for a problem. You are an easy person to blame. I'm sure the dog did not get infected from you.

              Do you really want these people as clients if they are going to treat you this way? I know its hard when you love the dog, but dont beat yourself up.

              I'm very happy that I have a personal relationship with our local vets. I can call them anytime with anything and they are always there for me. She once called me for advice!!! I was so honored. )


              • #8
                I am so glad there is such an abundance of info here to draw upon. I got a call yesterday from a client, the dog has a looooonnnng history of hot spots and general health problems. Now I get a voicemail theat he has a staff infection and am concerned whether the client blames me or if he possibly did get it from my mobile. I don't think either is the case but want to be ready to address it if the question comes up. This is an old thread but told me just what I need to know.


                • #9
                  Yes-recurring and ongoing infections are a sign of low immune issues. The causes of the immune deficiency can be thyroid, hormonal, even genetic predisposition (this is more often puppies). The dog could have gotten it from anywhere. In reality if you were a little over zealous w/ a brush and opened a minuscule spot on the skin, a dog w/ suppressed immunity could get a staph infection from that. Could it have happened @ your shop? Maybe. That doesn't mean it is your fault. We have to brush, comb, use clippers, all these can cause minute abrasions to the skin, which would cause problems in that type of dog. Personally, I would call the vet to see what the vet said and then just forget about it. If you are sanitizing enough then what else can you do? Like we have all experienced sometimes customers can dream up their own excuses sometimes and we are a likely scapegoat in their minds.
                  I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.