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Some grooms are not created equal

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  • Some grooms are not created equal

    Well, in my area there are some good groomers, some really bad groomers, some bad groomers and some so-so groomers.

    But today I had a scottie in that takes the cake. I honestly thought the owner groomed the dog herself. Nope, it was professionally groomed.

    It was shaved with what looked like maybe a #10 reverse. I thought it was a #7 reverse until they told me it was clipped TWO WEEKS ago. I could have died. And this dog is very black, so it was just a real smoothie all over, lol.

    The ears were hairy in back and front, the eyebrows were not separated and there really weren't any "brows" at all, just hair that wasn't clipped with the pattern, and the pattern on the face was way behind the eyes, with long dangly-like eyebrows, the back legs were matted, though I suppose it could have happened in two weeks, but it was fairly severe matting for a wirey haired scottie. It was filthy, (though very shiney), the water looked like sludge on the bottom of the tub. I was dumbfounded, to be honest with you. I was only doing a "refresher bath" after boarding to get the stinkies out, and she'd prepaid the small amount for it, so I did not do any dematting. It would not have been cheap/quick dematting, either, so I just brushed the legs as well as I could for the amount that was paid.

    The owner had asked what a "refresher bath" included, she was worried I wouldn't brush the dog. I assured her I would brush the dog, but that I "don't go over it with a fine-toothed comb" like I do with a B&B or full groom. I am wondering if she knew about the mats considering her concern that the dog be brushed.

    Unfortunately her son came to pick up the dog and she was in Las Vegas, so I didn't get to speak to her. I wanted to just politely mention that her dog's ears should be clipped "like this," and would she like me to do that real quick" (for free---believe me it works every time to bring them back, lol), but I didn't get to see her. I will still call her though, to mention to her that the dog is matted, and to get it in asap, but I am wondering if I should just leave it at that?

    Tammy in Utah
    Groomers Helper Affiliate

  • #2
    Edited.
    Last edited by pamperedpups; 02-20-07, 01:13 AM.

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    • #3
      Can pretend you didn't realize it was a "professional" job and when you speak to her act like you thought the dog had a home grooming? This maybe kinda underhanded, but I would worry that any other way you approached her would sound like your were bad mouthing the other groomer.
      SheilaB from SC

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      • #4
        That's the big problem with Pre-paid. I always hate when people say someone else is picking up the dog and I'm going to send X amount of $. Calling the lady would be a good idea and let her know that time/money or whatever didn't enable you to do alot of brushing which was needed. Maybe ask if he always tangles that quickly? I probably would not mention the last poor groom or lightly say it was a bit "different". No one ever likes to send a dog out that is not combed through but I think it is unwise to do more than you are being paid for. A quick bath is just that.

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        • #5
          I have to agree with the other post about letting a dog leave with mats. I have never had a dog leave without completely brushing out or shaving any matts (at least not intentionally). I don't, however, work in a boarding setting so I'm not sure how I would handle that type of situation. I have a golden retriever that comes in regularly and twice she has come in severely matted because she was boarded and the boarding facility bathed her but didn't brush her out. I've asked the owner to, in the future, decline the bath and plan to bring her directly to me upon pick-up from the kennel.

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          • #6
            I would not brush out the mats unless they were small and come out easy. I might have trimmed up the dog and made it look good. Then the owner would notice how nice their dog looked after you did and then come to you. As far as calling, I might just to let her know the dog was matted when it came to you. But I would not say anything about the groom job that was done by the other groomer. Some might take it the wrong way. Maybe it is her sister or daughter that is her groomer or best friend. You don't want that.
            If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise!

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            • #7
              Lisa, you are so right....no one knows the relationship nor dynamic between this client and previous groomer. It is so easy to offend unintentionally.

              I have a scottie client who loves to sleep in the garage under an oily leaky car. In one week he is filthy. Scotties are low to the ground scrappy little dogs, it would not be surprising that the dog got filthy in two weeks. I also believe that when the client was assured the dog would be brushed out that she could rightfully assume that matting would be taken out. I know I would assume that, and if I told a client that I would have committed myself to taking the mats out one way or another. Perhaps you could have called her and told her you were clipping the mats out. They are going to have to come out, and now she is going to have to pay yet another time to get the matting out. I think I would have taken care of the matting and billed her or something...maybe not expecting to get the money, but i would have made the dog right. I wouldn't want a dog leaving my business matted. I think it is really easy for groomers, myself included, to jump on a bandwagon of dissing another groomers work and assuming an attitude of superiority. Just remember that somewhere, sometime, another groomer is probably getting a dog that you groomed and thinking "I wonder who groomed THIS?" In other words, we all are imperfect and those who live in glass houses...what goes around comes around.... and all that.....

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              • #8
                Tammy, I bet I know where that dog got groomed last... LOL... Probaly the place I used to use for Hoss's daycare... Oh they were horrible. I was there one day when a client came in and told them exactly how they wanted their dog, and the groomer started on the dog right away. It didn't look anything like the client asked for.

                But then I did a Westie once where the owners thought it was supposed to be extremely short on the back and the skirt was supposed to start half way down the legs. It looked awful, then I showed them a picture... They quickly changed the dogs cut... LOL
                Becky

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                • #9
                  Seems to me if the owner specifically asked if the bath included brushing that she realized it was matted or getting close. Telling an owner yes, the bath includes brushing implies the dog won't be matted when she picks it up.

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                  • #10
                    Could the dog have been groomed prior by instructions given to the groomer by the owner?

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                    • #11
                      I have to agree with pampered. I have a Yorkie who gets a modified westie cut and the owner HATES when I blend in the skirt, they LOVE the hula line...ugh.

                      Also, Diam is so right, I know she paid less, but you could have made 10x more in the long run if you would have done a little extra. We had a lady who came in to our shop for Self Serve, her dog was very matted (she had just adopted it from a rescue she claims) anyway, we offered her a groom. Because of cost she declined, so myself (I am the salon owner) and a groomer began working on this dog. She gave my groomer a $20 tip and has referred about 10 new clients to us.

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                      • #12
                        [QUOTE=Fur Elite;11711]Lisa, you are so right....no one knows the relationship nor dynamic between this client and previous groomer. It is so easy to offend unintentionally.

                        Couldn't have said it better.

                        I'm not attacking you, you know me well enough to know that too. I probably would have brushed out the matts. I just couldn't stand the idea of sending home a dog that was matted. I'm not sure if I would have done any other work on it, like the ears, or feet. My self I wouldn't have worried about the extra cost in the dematting either, but that's just me. I don't think it would hurt to call and talk to the lady, explain why the dog wasn't dematted and such.
                        "There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face."
                        Diane

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                        • #13
                          I guess that's one of the good things about where I work now. If a boarder is to be bathed before going home then it's a full service bath. We don't do "kennel" baths. They did where I used to work but the kennel staff did them.

                          Lisa

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                          • #14
                            Upon taking the dog in, I think I would have stated to her, a bath with a brushout will be extra and it will be xxxx. Would you like a bath and brushout, or leave the mats and bathe only? I've seen those kinds before! ugh
                            I agree, you should call her and re-explain everything to her...Would I say anything about the "bad groom job"? nah, just groom it right and I'm sure she will notice the difference...

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                            • #15
                              I agree with most oppinions on leaving the matting.some breed you can get away with a fresh up bath but many other breeds you just cant.Yes she got what paid for but at whos expence ?
                              In the long run this will be at your expence now she will return home to a matted dog that just smells somewhat better.Granted I'm not big on doing freebees time is money money is time ect ,But in cases such as this I would have gone that extra mile and removed all the matting.Sure she didnt want a haircut this time.However if the dog were genuinly clean and brushed out your chances of getting return business whether full groom of just a simple bath at reg rates would have been much higher.Unfortunatly you have just put yourself into the lesser qualified groomers position.word of mouth is your highest form of advertizement more clients are either recieved or lost potential clients by grooming skills prase and clientels oppinion to others of it..you can discount your grooms all day long and yes clients will love it .However We should NEVER ever do less quality workmanship.you agreed to a flat rate fee .in cases as these its the groomers loss not the clients.
                              IME I have found it much more paletable to clientel to be upfront in advance about dematting fees .if they insist on paying in advance I charge say up to 25 pr hr for dematting.however you dont know long it will take to remove matting charge base price ad on matting fees do the job thoroughly and refund unused portions.if this is explained to them upfront most are very understanding about it and the worse thay can so is ill just wait and take him to my groomer..yes you lost a sale this time around.But at least you didnt get short changed or visa versa.

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