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A few noob questions.

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  • A few noob questions.

    Hello-

    I'm about a month away from finishing grooming school and was going to try starting a housecall business in the meantime. At school we have recirculating tubs and all that, and was wondering what y'all use for bathing? Just the client's tub? Any attachments to the faucets? I have a table w/ arm and groomers helper, dryer, and assorted shampoos (aside from my clippers/scissors/brushes). Is there anything else? Do you charge more than a mobile groomer? How much more?

  • #2
    Are you planning on doing this right after you finish school?

    I would advise you to work in a shop for at least a year and get a little more knowledge under your belt before you go out on your own. JMO
    "There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face."
    Diane

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    • #3
      This is something I'm also interested in.

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      • #4
        I groom housecall

        I use the Hanvey Bathing System and their non-advertised portable Taxivac. That portable works for clippering, drying and vacuuming. The Bathing System alleviates all hose hookups, water pressure concerns etc. I do have to suggest that one must feel pretty darn confident of their grooming and dog handling abilities to groom right in front of the owners. I love it personally, but am grateful for over 14 years of experience when a critical customer is about. It is a unique service and certainly even more not for everyone, so takes a bit longer to gain good customers. But I'm very social and love the interactions with the customer and like being watched for how good a groomer I am and how good I am with sometimes very difficult dogs. I don't groom real biters though, I'll let the challenge enjoying groomers handle those.
        Money will buy you a pretty good dog but it won't buy the wag of it's tail.

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        • #5
          I do plan on working in a salon for a while after finishing school. I was going to try putting some flyers up around my neighborhood and at a pet store I used to work at that I'm an apprentice groomer looking to get my feet wet. I figure at least a few people would call - and I'd tell them to not expect a show poodle trim (but not that I'll make their pets look bad either). I thought 'd give a lower rate as well, since I'm not finished - but I'm not sure how much to use as a base to compare. In my area most salons charge around $40-an-hour, with most dogs taking about that long. You guys have to be charging more than the salons for the convenience factor (let alone gas, etc.), right?

          Thanks for the feedback.

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          • #6
            and

            Don't forget liability insurance, and legal release forms.

            And do start with family and friends you know untill you
            graduate. It is nerve wraking working for people you don't
            know, with dogs you don't know, and you are in the dogs
            territory. If you get there, and the dog is aggressive and
            you can't groom him or her, they will NOT want to pay
            you for your time,or gas, so be prepared to handle some
            tricky situations.
            Are you sure you can do a profile on a Bichon already?
            You are also dealing with people you do not know.
            I can't tell your age from your post, but make sure there is
            more than say, some guy there alone, that you don't know
            and have never met. Home grooming is not without its
            risks.

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            • #7
              I'm 25 and actually am a guy (not gay either - I'm unusual).

              That's a decent point about the release forms and liability insurance though. I don't think my scissoring is up to snuff for a Bichon just yet, but I'd have no problem with just about any terrier or camper-poodle. I also have the advantage that I'm more physically imposing than most groomers because I'm a guy - dogs tend to behave better with me than with the others in my class, even the same exact dog. And if it's necessary to dump a dog it's a little easier for me than most.

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              • #8
                Dump a dog? What's that mean?

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                • #9
                  Lay the dog on the side with your arm over the neck (but certainly not very tight) to trim nails on extremely recalcitrant dogs. It's essentially to prevent the owner from having to get the dog sedated at the vet every 4 weeks or so.

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