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Groomed Cujo today!!! YIKES!!

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  • Groomed Cujo today!!! YIKES!!

    Well, not exactly Cujo, but I was thinking about that movie an awful lot while grooming this dog! I am a new groomer who was getting a bit cocky about that fact that I've had ALL perfect dogs to groom so far. Every one of them have been perfect angels and have had the best dispositions (not that I've groomed a lot of dogs in my very short career). I was beginning to think I had a "special" way about me and that it would always be that way!! LOL!!! NOT!!! Today I got this cute little Collie named Yogi who belongs to a prominent dentist in my town and who is dearly loved and highly spoiled. I was told that his previous groomer seemed like she didn't like Yogi whenever they would go to pick him up up after grooming. I was also warned that he had to be muzzled for grooming where he went before. They never told me exactly why, but the little guy seemed so sweet when I first met him. He loved me brushing him out (until I got to his chest area) that's when I got the first bite (almost). I'm quicker than I thought. Then when I went to give him a bath..he went CRAZY, attacking the sprayer and me. He was showing all his teeth and lunging at me. It was horrible!!! I put the muzzle on him (not happy about having to do that) but that didn't make much of a difference. He still snapped and lunged and flipped around like a gator in a snare. I thought for a moment that I was just going to stop the whole process and call up his owner to come get him, but DARN IT, I wanted to make it work. I was going to groom that dog, no matter what. I got my husband to come out and help me, and little by little, we got it done. He had to be muzzled the whole time and my hubby had to hold him so that he wouldn't lunge at me. He didn't look the absolute best when I was done, but he did look better. He definitely hadn't been groomed in a very long time. SOOOOOO, any advice for this NEWBIE who has her poor little feelings hurt because this dog would not warm up to me??? Any suggestions on what I could have done differently?? Thanks in advance!!

  • #2
    Originally posted by deberdoo View Post

    SOOOOOO, any advice for this NEWBIE who has her poor little feelings hurt because this dog would not warm up to me??? Any suggestions on what I could have done differently?? Thanks in advance!!
    Simply because you love all dogs does not mean all dogs will love you. Let alone obey you and let you do whatever you want with them.

    Keep in mind you will be crossing paths with any number of nasty spoiled rotten dogs that have no qualms over taking a chunk out of their very owners if provoked. That being the case, they are unlikely to become a fawning wuss simply because you walk into their personal circle and touched them gently.

    My rule of is if a dog demonstrates any willingness to nail me, that dog gets muzzled immediately and the show will continue in spite of canine opinions to the contrary. I am only there to groom them and only have a brief period of time in which to do it. And I have zero interest in getting bitten simply because Buffy is a sourpuss about soap and water and is having a bad day.

    I remember one newbie who insisted she could do some sort of Vulcan Mind Meld with a dog that was showing her every tooth in its head and snarling at her with that vicious high-pitched growl that means business. When I opined the dog needed a muzzle to be safely handled, I was firmly told to shut up and mind my own business.

    So, I did. And within five minutes of being warned, my Vulcan friend wound up with that hound grabbing her by the throat.

    Play it safe. A small chunk of nylon around a dog's muzzle is a small price to pay for safety. Don't let ego tell you otherwise.


    • #3
      Handling Cujo

      Why should your feelings be hurt? You should be glad that your hands, arms and face weren't hurt!! I 'd be very interested as to just what he did at the last groomers and why! I'd like to know why this prominent dentist had waited so long to have him groomed again...perhaps that is the problem. I'd also like to know how you dealt with little Cujo and how did you discuss the little terror when dad returned to pick him up?

      Do not be stressed because he didn't like you, that is just silly! How much did you like him? It is a two-way street with biters. Sounds to me like this dog has some very spoiled habits that need to be dealt with. Collies can be a handful, that is quite true, but they should be do-able. I wonder were you so "impressed" with the very respected Dr. that you didn't want to see the reality of a problem dog? It doen't matter who owns the dog, it is has issues they need to be dealt with! This usually begins with a serious talk with the owner regarding the necessity for training and getting the dog on a regular grooming schedule. In this case I'd suggest every 3-4 weeks for a bath and brush-out, then a full groom on the 3rd visit.

      good luck,


      • #4
        You are almost an "official" groomer, you must be bitten once for the title offical groomer! As for advice, never let your guard down, never be cocky, if possible take some handling classes from a seasoned professonal dog trainer it will help in reading dogs. Congrats on surviving the groom.
        ~~Everyone is entitled to my opinion!~~


        • #5
          I know how you feel as before I started grooming dogs I thought I had a "special bond" with all animals and was beside myself when the first nasty little dog tried to bite me but soon got over to get done what I needed to get done.


          • #6
            I hope you know I was making fun of myself about the whole incident with the Collie. I don't think for a single second that I have any special skills to make difficult dogs turn into perfect little angels whenever they're around me. I went into this business because of my great love for dogs, but I know they are not all going to love me, and I shouldn't care if they do. I am doing this to make money as well. I posted because I knew I'd get some great advice...and I did. Thanks!!! I was one of those people who didn't want to use the muzzle because I thought it was in- humane...but I guess the bottom line is that I have to protect myself, and it is far better for the dog to have this brief time of being "uncomfortable" so that he can be groomed. It is more in-humane to "NOT" groom the dog and to let him get in a terrible mess. The dentist and his wife are out of town. The housekeeper is the one who brought the dog to me, so I have the owners info. to call them when they get back into town....and YES, I will discuss the whole situation and encourage them to put Cujo...aka...Yogi on a consistent grooming schedule. In the meantime, I will be searching Ebay for some body armor. LOL. But seriously, I am going to invest in the Groomers Helper. Thanks again everyone!!


            • #7
              Sounds like Yogi needs more than regular grooming. I hope you really don't consider muzzles as inhuman. They are a tool, just like a brush or comb. I would insist that the Dentist hire an obedience trainer before I ever touched that dog again. It really isn't worth an injury to you..or the dog as he's thrashing around and lunging. I would hate to have a vet bill to pay if the crazy beast hurts himself trying to hurt you. It wasn't too long ago that an old client called me to groom their new dog. Previously they had a Golden, but he died at the ripe old age of 15. The dog they "rescued" was an untrained, spoiled, crazy as hell mix with Rott, shepard and alittle beagle thrown in. I swear that dog almost ripped apart my trailer as he reacted to water like it was acid. I finally got my leash around neck and literally threw him out the door. That was the only way to snap him out of whatever was going on in his head. I walked him back to the Admiral...gave him the number of a good trainer and left. Call me if and when your dog is trained.


              • #8

                My own 13 year old Lab who is in pain nailed me the other night when I picked him up for his bath, my hand swelled to twice the size and it still hurts, I have been bitten before but this was the worst, it was scary and I can't imagine if it had been my face, I got my husband to make me kind of a homemade groomers helper set up and it is a big help, the Lab is still dirty hubby will have to help me b/c I am still scarred, so true. I have found a way to do reluctant pets feet/nails, I but my back and kind of sit on the table and hug them tight under my arm to my body hold leg by their elbow firmly and stabilize paw for work, they can't get your face or hands and you pretty well have them, I have had a couple of these grouchies seem to butter up to me after winning these little tiffs, I am trying to be the alpha, now wish me luck with my almost six year old daughter.


                • #9
                  Invest in the groomers helper. It does help with these nasty little buggers. Some will still flip and flop but you will be a lot safer. Being that your new this may have made it harder yet with this little guy like any other unfamiliar situation you get in you can become frustrated causing the dog to get on edge and act up even more. Animals feed off you and sense any upset you could be feeling. Try not to take it personal they really aren't doing it to upset you even though sometimes it seems that way.
                  just keep working with him hopefully you'll get to a point where he calms down some

                  Good luck
                  "I've seen a look in dogs' eyes, a quickly vanishing look of amazed contempt,
                  and I am convinced that basically dogs think humans are nuts." - John Steinbeck


                  • #10
                    I have found it actually very helpful when it comes to dogs like this to have the owner stay during the groom .Not only for your benefit of getting the job done but this type of owner needs to see his dogs true colors. Once an owner sees how patient you are and how impatient his pet really is the blame is now passed to the one deserving Not YOU. Do not look at a muzzle or any type of safety restraint as a punishment for these dogs this is for your protection along with the dogs as well.Never ever ever feel bad for having to muzzle a dog because he is trying and will cause you physical injury .