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  • What makes a good groomer?

    I was talking to a fellow groomer friend tonight who has known me since June-July. I did a demo on how to groom and set a mini Schnauzer properly in Aug. she asked me to do. Halle makes it easy,because she is my pretty gal.All AKC Champ relatives 3 gens + litter sister. She was too lil. My friend has seen me groom in my van, and 2 good-looking pet black Schn. bros. I w3as under the carbon monoxide fog at the time,and not at my best. I have supported myself for7 yrs here and way before that in SF bayarea. I am self taught except for. Hershey and Burbank Expos and a few Stazko/ De Fante Seminars-M. Romani too. I also spent many hrs watching P. Johnson an award-winning best all around groomer in her vaqn and at her home. That was &yrs. ago.Suddenly, I am questioning where I fit in as a groomer. I do scissor Bichons w/ help of trusty Clipper vac. but terriers are my forte. I please cocker owners too. Often told best hes ever looked. But who did him before me? A student at Pet-----? Or a skilled scissor wizzerd somewhere between me and Pat? Will retire one two yrs. Why worry now. Just want to be better than average. My tlc makes up for lack in some areas. No cuts nicks or horror stories to tell. Til Az . No accidents, no ne. @61 I know I ain't what I once was. NO Miami trims for me or fancy poodle trims. I believe when I get a full coat Bichon it looks good. Most including don't want that length. comment ok?

  • #2
    Sounds like you're doing fine. I hope at 61 I am syill doing this and still wondering just like you, if my skills are up to par. That means you still have the drive to learn and be better...
    Making Central Florida Pawsitively Purrfect since 2005.

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    • #3
      You sound as if you are doing fabulous and best of all you still question and strive to be better. We more people like you in this world.

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      • #4
        my arms aren't what they use to be..I've always been a speed groomer, but I dont think when Im 60 I'll be able to even dress myself lol

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Gracy Rose View Post
          You sound as if you are doing fabulous and best of all you still question and strive to be better. We more people like you in this world.
          It's in your heart and that's what matters most
          Last edited by plushpuppy; 01-16-07, 11:08 PM.
          "Whoever Said That Money Can't Buy Happiness Forgot About Puppies"
          Nancy

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          • #6
            I know at 56 I am doing my best to learn how to do Bichons correctly. I find myself looking back a few years ago when I would not even attempt a bichon head, although I groomed a few, and lucky for me the owners didn't want a bichon head. Now I find it hard to do just regular round heads on them, when that's what most owners seem to actually want.

            I have found that over the last few years my grooming has changed more than it ever has, and I thought that I was doing good before that. I know that having to work with my daughter again has made a big difference, as she still doesn't know when it is time to stop, after grooming for about 15 years. I also have found that I handle the dogs a lot better now too.

            I know that I can no longer do big, hard-to-do dogs anymore and don't want to do them, but I do feel that something has changed in my grooming, as I just feel more in touch with it. Do any of you other long time groomers know what I mean? I have found that I like my job more now that I ever have, but I also recognize my limitations now, too.

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            • #7
              Like I said before...it inspires me to see you all still grooming...care to share some tips on keeping healthy and happy while grooming?
              Making Central Florida Pawsitively Purrfect since 2005.

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              • #8
                Hey, you babies out there- I really don't look that old. My hair is short and sassy flipped up . Was frosted, now roots red-blond foil. People think I am 50, a few 40s. If I could loose 45lbs I'd be fab. I was 5ft7 now 61/4. shocket I shrunk. I too,know my limits but frustratreed I have them. If the 3 dogs are 2 poms and as.hair chiwawa {I know it's spelled wrong} I can do a few 1 or two more. If I have more than4 booked I worry if I can do #4 well. Most in a day in my mobile career 7. Ok, I"M old,but a goodie.Where did the time go?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Pawsitively Purrfect View Post
                  Like I said before...it inspires me to see you all still grooming...care to share some tips on keeping healthy and happy while grooming?
                  I can't say that I have always been happy and healthy grooming. I have had to have back surgery once, from thinking that I was indistructable. A few years ago I came down with an autoimmune disease because I would not listen to my body when I got sick and wouldn't rest and get over it. So the last few years hasn't been easy health whys, but it is a lot better now.

                  I did go thru periods of burn out, where I really wanted to do something else, and went back to school for a couple of years and continued to groom part of that time. But nothing that I was doing was going to make the money I could make grooming, and I didn't like having a boss, and I like being able to talk to my customers.

                  I have my own shop now that I really like, although I would like to someday move into a bigger shop in the same center. I love the area of my shop, and the clients that it draws. I love having my daughter working with me again, and my husband has retired and is our bather, which helps so much. I can just enjoy the grooming part and have more time to do it.

                  Last but not least I found this board which has helped as much as anything has in renewing my love of grooming.

                  Sally

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                  • #10
                    Knowing your strengths and weaknesses are key!!

                    We can't be good at everything...lol.
                    I apprenticed with a groomer who had 30+ years of hands on. She started me with finishing poodle and bichon heads. I remember crying in a little bichons face telling him I'm so sorry I don't know what I'm doing...lmao!

                    As frustrating as the learning was to start with heads, I totally appreciate it now. I can whip out a great poo head, or bichon head. I love doing little round faces.

                    For me, it's been about ALWAYS wanting to learn more, or to try different methods...sometimes someone else can show you an easier way.

                    Sounds like you are doing just fine!

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                    • #11
                      Be Happy

                      I worked with a groomer once who always needed to be reassured about the groom by either me or the client. Be confident! If clients are making appointments its because they value your ablities. Don't over analyse!! Are you happy? Enjoying your profession? In the final equation, your helping alot of people with their treasures!!!

                      Buzz

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                      • #12
                        A great groomer!

                        I believe that a great groomer is someone who is continually striving to improve their knowledge, skills and cutomer service. As well as someone who has a true compassion and love of animals. A great groomer will strive to be an excellent example for the grooming industry as well as a true professional.

                        I also believe that great groomers can be found in "all skill and experience levels" in the grooming industry. Even a "newbie" can be a great groomer. Being a great groomer is in your heart!
                        Last edited by toomuchfunbnme; 01-19-07, 11:40 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by toomuchfunbnme View Post
                          I believe that a great groomer is someone who is continually striving to improve their knowledge, skills and cutomer service. As well as someone who has a true compassion and love of animals. A great groomer will strive to be an excellent example for the grooming industry as well as a true professional.

                          I also believe that great groomers can be found in "all skill levels" in the grooming industry. Even a "newbie" can be a great groomer. Being a great groomer is in your heart!
                          That is what I believe too! I have worked with old groomers, and I'll call them old because they never change, and they think their way, is the only way and they have closed themselves off to learning anymore. It's pretty bad when I look back at some of the places that I have worked.

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                          • #14
                            Thank you all for the kind words and encouragement. I do try to be consciencous. Show LOve, joy, peace , patientence,,kindness,goodness,gentleness always,faithfulness, and last and hardest,self control. I do love to try new things. I jumped right in w/ Clipper vac yrs ago..can't clip without. I like to think ai 30 yrs in this I M an oldie-but a goodie. The dogs Lub, as Traveler says it...the clients and dogs Lub me.Peggy, who just lost Kaiser told me her co-workers are shocket she pays so much for grooming {the bill everyone for a Xmas bonus} +10. The fact that I love her dogs, nearby, quick..and never worries I'd be mean to them.

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                            • #15
                              I had this same discussion with someone not too long ago. And I guess I see it from a different angle.

                              Of course, a great groomer is constantly seeking new knowledge, not only about grooming styles and techniques, but medical issues, occupational safety, dealing with difficult clients, and knowing how to have a back bone without stepping on someones toes.

                              And I've heard it said that a great groomer loves and has compassion for animals. Well, maybe. But I know a lot of people who love dogs, they have a passion for dogs, but they don't have a clue about dogs. To me, a great groomer understands dogs. They know dogs better than they know themselves. And they not only expect dogs to act like dogs, they allow them the dignity of acting like dogs. They understand why dogs don't like their nails trimmed or their tails messed with. They appreciate the dogs that allow it without a fuss, but they realize that it's stressful anyway.

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