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  • Big dogs

    So at what did y'all stop taking them? For those of you that don't groom them. I have several LG brreds. Considering only taking up to cocker or sheltie size pets from here on out.

  • #2
    I'll be 64 in a couple weeks. We still take very large dogs. However, I have a bather and hubby helps with the huge ones getting them on the table and in and out of the tub. Once they're on the table, I'm fine with them. One of my favorites is a newfie/lab mix - she's 120 lbs. Poor old girl is having hip problems now so it's hard to get her on the table, it takes two of us. I fashioned a support with chains and a pool noodle that keeps her standing with a minimum of stress (she can put weight on the noodle and it doesn't bother her).
    If I were by myself, I think at this point - my age and arthritis (especially from the dog bite to my hands 18 months ago!), I would only take dogs under 45 lbs.

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    • #3
      I am 60 & stopped taking large dogs about 1.5 yrs ago when my hip problems got worse. It was easy to decline new dogs, REALLY EASY. But it was harder to deal with my current big dog clients...I kept the "cooperative/regularly groomed" dogs, and explained to the less regular/less cooperative beasts that I was having hip problems and it was just too hard on my body. Not all of these clients were as understanding as I expected. Actually had a matted 50#, hugely overweight cav client argue with me that cavs were small dogs!
      Tuckie
      Teacup Member
      Last edited by Tuckie; 10-27-16, 12:10 PM. Reason: spelling

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      • #4
        I do very few big dogs, though I have them myself.. Labradors. The main reason is that it seems that most of the owners are weird. Like I had this one guy, with a very unruly Chocolate lab who stayed for the bath and blow out the first time... and he actually sat on his dog while I ATTEMPTED to do the dog's nails. Next time.. he didn't stay and my hubby held the dog.. and the dog was an angel. But have I seen him in 4 months? NO.

        Another dog I did was a 100 lb Husky. Uh.. no your dog isn't a Husky. And they only came every 4 months.. and twice.. TWICE.. they accused me of cutting their dog. It was sooo odd. I'm sorry.. I used a brush and a comb.. flat against the skin. I know how to comb. The first time I figured the dog got the cut at dog park and they never saw it because the dog was sooo hairy. The second time.. the dog sat in my salon for an hour while I waited for the owner to show up. No cut.. no way to get cut. And as soon as the dog got in the car.. the owner came back and said her dog was cut again. I went and looked.. sure enough.. a cut on the dog's back. They never asked for a refund.. but wanted a discount. And I just thought.. that's just beyond weird. So the third time.oh sorry, can't do big dogs anymore. Go be Munchhausen somewhere else.

        It's like this all the time it seems. I have this one Golden I did once a year! No.. and the dog is beyond obese and that makes me sad. I would love to do Labrador and Chihuahua baths all the time hahahahaha.

        I actually find the smaller dogs in the tub hurt my back more for some reason.. I just think it's my tub??
        Debbie
        There's always room for another rose in the garden.

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        • #5
          I quit taking new large dogs when I became HB ( 6 yrs ago ), I continued to due current large dogs untill last yr when the last one crossed Rainbow Bridge. I still do my own 2 very large boys. It just got to the point where other ppls large dogs were too hard on my body and ppl didn't want to pay 3 or 4 shihs price to have large dogs groomed. I now refer all large dogs to the young groomer in town.
          Ain't always easy to stand up for what is right.

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          • #6
            I have accepted my last large clients. Technically Tuesday but unless it's a collie no more. Every one big guys are required to be set once a month. I have come to the realization that I am unable to catch it if it runs, catch it if it falls, control it if it loses it mind, hold it up on my own and stop it from killing any or everything if it's aggressive or mentally or emotionally challenged. My safety comes before that. So does the safety of any pet in my care

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            • #7
              Have never done many large dogs. Goldens, St Poos, Airedales-but not too many. I'm 65 now, and semi-retired due to a heart condition. My back thanks me after an over 40 yr career. Now, with hydraulic tubs and low rise tables, grooming the big guys is much easier. If I were starting over today, and I wanted to groom large dogs, these would be a no-brainer to purchase. Worth every penny in the long run.
              Old groomers never die, they just go at a slower clip.

              Groom on!!!

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              • #8
                I'm still doing the large ones - when clients ask and understand that I won't shave Labs and Goldens because 'they shed'. Well, duh!!

                But back to topic. I'm getting to the point of not bring physically able to hold them still and lift up their butts when they want to sit. I've got some long time clients are I differ give up, but it's some of the new ones that I am thinking that after one or possibly two grooms I'm getting ready to tell the clients that I physically can't do them. Some of these are three times a year overweight Bichons and bichon mixes
                (at least they have white fur). But then I have a #110 true service dog that just started coming in. I would always find the strength to do service dogs or first responder dogs - and I've a few of them as well.
                But guess I'd want to ask how you let your clients know that their dog is too big or heavy? I have a front desk staff
                At the clinic that SUCKS!! They are either totally clueless or just lazy and fillng in the blanks on the computer so they will Most likely continue Not be able to assist in a total dcreening of new clients who call in for appointments. Any advice on how to gently turn away clients on the they arrive ? Or do you suggest I bite the bullet and do the dog one time and then send them away. I really appreciate your advice. Thanks

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                • #9
                  Honey, I would tell the front desk person that you will no longer be accepting dogs over X #-40-50? whatever you're comfortable with. Tell her, and be adamant, that if she continues to book these dogs, then she-not you-will be lifting them. As far as telling existing clients, just be honest. You physically can't do them any longer safely because they are too heavy for you. When I stopped taking any large dog, and people phoned, I would tell them that if they couldn't easily lift their dog up to the kitchen counter, that dog was too heavy for me. Size is relative, but they understood that.It's your body, and we only get one. We need to take care of ourselves first.
                  Old groomers never die, they just go at a slower clip.

                  Groom on!!!

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                  • #10
                    Oh, I do many over weight "small, medium " dogs. 1 55lb westy, 1 50lb cocker, several 40lb shih,.ect...ya'll get the drift. Several of these owners cant even pick up their own dogs! They have been told and told they are killing these dogs, crushing their joints, internal organs are not designed to support this type of over weight dogs. These I just charge extra for.
                    Large dogs to me is goldens, labs, huskys, GSD, Doodles, Pyrs, ect. Moses is correct in I can't safely hold up, catch them if they decide to jump out of the tub, control them freak out or get aggressive. Not safe for me or the dog.
                    Karla is right, if we had had electric tables and tubs now available when we were young, our bodies might hold out longer.
                    Ain't always easy to stand up for what is right.

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                    • #11
                      I did big dogs way longer than I should have, I think. I just gave them up at the first of this year. I love big dogs. My back which has some pretty severe damage doesn't. It's a shame because I love big dogs. I have all the equipment to make it easier-- mobile hydraulic table, elevated tub, and that probably bought me a lot of time since I bought the table from nearly the start of my career, but it was still a lot of work. To be fair, my crunchy back isn't only grooming related. I've done a lot of hard manual labor since I was a small kid on a farm. The rest of my body is in good shape. Each day, my back threatens to quit me. Gosh, I miss big dogs. I love them. I want to own another Standard Poodle so bad I can't stand it, but I am past being able to keep up with maintenance.

                      I still do a couple of larger-than-my-cut-off easy dogs for some favorite people, but neither of them weighs more than 55ish lbs. My cut off is around 30. Each time, though, I struggle with the thought of letting them go.

                      So many people want to argue. "But she's really small for a GSD, Lab, whatever." Which is why I ask for weight not breed when people come in asking for baths. I'm sorry I can't wash your small 80 lb GSD as much as I'd love to. I'm not taking new haircut clients, but I will still take some small dog walk in baths. There is a new PetSomething opening within half a mile of me in a couple of weeks. They will surely be overrun with a lotta lotta big dogs.

                      Honey, as others said, I would make my boundaries clear to the front desk. Then when they overstepped them and scheduled dogs I have clearly said I won't do, I would politely redirect the erroneously scheduled client to the front desk to handle that error. If the front desk people are the ones having to deal with irate people, they may be more conscientious about screening and scheduling in the future. To me, it's a whole lot easier to turn them away at the start than get them started and have to quit them. How much control do you have over scheduling? If you are able to refuse dogs, do it. One of the first things I did when I was working in a clinic, though, was take total control of my own scheduling and do it myself because of being overextended by front desk people. For me, the hassle of fielding my own calls was worth the aggravation caused by front desk people who really did not understand the difference between, say, five Standard Poodles and five Yorkies, or anything in between.

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                      • #12
                        We get lots of them and so glad I have some employees. We charge well for them and brings in lots of money but definitely something to have someone else working for you do them once you have been working 10 years.

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                        • #13
                          Just starting my 3rd year of business & 52 years old (boy, it's hard to type that!!) and as the owner of 4 large dogs, I hope I can groom them and my larger clients for many years. They are my favorite and yes, bring in a lot of money. I cannot imagine what so many of you went thru with out the electric/hydraulic tables & tubs. Just even imagining how heavy a lot of those old clippers used to be......you all WOW me![emoji1303][emoji252]


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                          • #14
                            To me, large dogs are the bread and butter of the grooming industry. I don't groom extra large(Pyr, Newfs, Komondor, Bouvier, Maremma and the like). My body just can't handle the aftermath anymore. But, I still groom lg Goldens, huskies, GSD, etc. Most of my big dogs are on regular grooming schedules though too. I find that people out my way, just don't want to pay what grooming an extra large dog is worth.


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