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It never gets easier when a dog is injured

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  • It never gets easier when a dog is injured

    Was clipping a very matted Bichon today, owner warned me the dog could be nuts for the groom, but I have a Groomer's Helper and lots of patience, so I thought all would be okay. Well, as I got the body shaved down to a #7 and was working on the head (also had to use a #7), got most of the head done, she was flipping all over the place even with the Groomer's Helper! Never seen the like.

    I was carefully working near near her eyes when I saw some blood hit the table. Scary, I saw eye looked like it was full of blood! Grabbed a paper towel and wiped the blood away, looked like just a nick on the lower eyelid but hard to tell. Called the owner from the van to bring me some ice. She was VERY nice and calm about the whole thing. We applied ice and pressure and the bleeding soon stopped, revealing a little "v" nick on the lower lid.

    The owner still wanted me to groom her Yorkie, and was hopeful I could finish the Bichon. I was glad she was still confident with me, this was my first time out there, and I was feeling okay about it, so I took the Yorkie out. But he immediately started to spin around and I then tried to bite me, so I decided that was enough for me and took him back to the house. No way was I about to injure two of her dogs!

    I was hesitant to bathe the other dog in case the eye started to bleed again. I told her if she was my dog I'd take her to the vet; I did not charge for the time was there (about 45 minutes) and did not offer to pay vet bills. Owner did not ask for me to either. In fact, I got a call from her later that she had the dog seen, they said a stitch was optional (she opted not to) and gave her some antibiotic ointment. Both the vet and myself were surprised that I did not scratch the cornea, but I am obviously relieved about it.

    The person was so very nice, I'd love to have been able to have her for a client, but I just can't see myself going through that every 4-6 weeks, regardless of what I would charge her. I hope she can find someone to help her, her dogs really need to be groomed and the poor Yorkie is not even two years old, if it can't tolerate being groomed it's going to have a rough life.

    I did give her the name of another local mobile who has more experience than I do and had been a vet tech -- if anyone CAN handle these dogs she can, I am sure of it.

    But even though it's been forever since I've injured a dog and even though the client was as nice as can be -- she even referred me to a woman she met at the vet and who called me already, but we're playing phone tag-- it still shakes you up so when it happens. I can hardly believe she recommended me after I injure her dog, but she seems to know that these things happen, especially when your dog is a bit nuts for grooming.


  • #2
    Sometimes I think it gets harder!

    I feel for you, I know how guilty you feel when an accident happens. I think over my 22 years of grooming I've actually gotten MORE cautious, and, well, maybe a tiny bit paranoid about injuries occuring. I've always been careful, but eventually something is going to go wrong. It's part of the job, unfortunately- you just aim for zero accidents, and it will probably be a rare occurance. Chin up, it all worked out the best it could! :-)


    • #3
      Surprise Call

      I actually got a surprise call from Beas' moms' referral. Call her christie...has a 7mo Shih Tzu claims she bathes often and NO matts..hope she knows what she is talking about. I told her about Beas' problem. It doesn't matter to her. I wonder if she talked to candice. The pup was fine. Bad around trimming face, so I quit. I think it is hard to know when to risk a snip, and when to give up. that one snip could be a big regret. Boy, willmI be cateful and nervous. A few days away...early...have to bump another new one to noon. She rescheduled tho' so she has to understand I gotta fit'em in where I can. I think a new dog should be first when I am not tired. I always like my own hair done when HD is not tired at end of day. If anyone knew me, they would all want me first of the day. Are you as good at 4 as you are at 9? Not me. unless it is bath only.I think it was good that I was honest...not hiding anything.


      • #4
        That is one nice lady. She knows her dog is nuts, so what can she do? I'd recommend her asking a vet about using a little benadryl (though I've not always seen great benefits, though I hadn't groomed the particular dogs with OUT the benadryl either, so maybe there is a difference, lol).

        Or eventually having them knocked out for grooming. Something weird about 2 nutty dogs in one home.

        Tammy in Utah
        Groomers Helper Affiliate


        • #5
          I would never ecommend using a 7 blade on the face! Better to clean it like a poodle than to injure it, I'm sure you'll never do that again. If the dog is that wild why doesn't the owner give it some tranq's???


          • #6
            Last edited by pamperedpups; 02-25-07, 03:20 PM.


            • #7
              oh I know how you feel. I did a schnauzer that was a brat and I nicked his ear with the clippers. I had another schnauzer yesterday and I swear it took me 20 minutes to do his ears because I was so afraid of cutting him too.
              If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise!


              • #8
                Don't give up! It gets better!

                A little over a week ago, I had a REALLY rough 24 hours. You can read all about it if you do a search on my post "Mental Health Day".

                I was totally rattled and more upset than anyone else. Turns out the owner elected not to take her dog to the vet even for skin glue. (I don't know how I feel about THAT, but I'm sure she got a better look at it than I did. The dog was WILD despite her tranquilizer)

                The good news is...I learned how to say "no" to those high risk dogs in a manner that the client will understand without hard feelings. I no longer attempt those dogs, because I do not want to risk an injury to them. I know from past experience and public feedback that I am talented with the more difficult dogs, but it just isn't worth it to me anymore. People need to pay professional trainers to help correct these maladaptive behaviors to rehabilitate their dogs. I am paid to groom. NOT to do all of that too, although it has been assumed even by those in our own industry that is our responsibility. IT IS NOT! We have done it because we love pets and want to help, but we are not compensated for it, in general.

                (Sorry, got me started. Where'd that soapbox come from, anyway?) teeheehee

                Long story short, too late....people here were fabulously supportive and I had a wonderfully blessed week! You will have an awesome week, too. This too shall pass!


                • #9
                  I have a Min. Schnauzer that I groom every 4 weeks. He is a brat. He will scream and snarl and carry on for his feet. He also gets aggressive when I stand him up or move his feet around. The owner has been having problems with him also so she finally found a trainer. He has made a lot of progress with the dog at home. I told the woman to make sure he teaches the dog to stand, she said he knows how to do that. So I told her to tell him to teach the dog how to stack. The trainer said only show dogs need to stack, and that I should just muzzle the dog. I always do muzzle the dog, but I wanted to be able to move his legs around without him freaking out. So today I did a dominant down with the little %^&!@. It didn't seem to help much.


                  • #10

                    Totally sucks when you injure a dog, but at least it was minor and the O. didn't freak, that would of made it so much worse!!


                    • #11
                      I have 2 Sharpeis that I bathe, I am the first groomer out of MANY according to mom who can do nails. They are crazy, I always take a helper on those days and have walked away many times from them. Somedays I can bathe and do their nails, sometimes I can't. I always charge her, because I do try.


                      • #12
                        I'm so glad that everything turned out alright for you Meesh. I agree with you BeyondBlessed. I refer difficult grooming dogs who require special handling to a veterinary groomer.


                        • #13


                          Snip> The owner has been having problems with him also so she finally found a trainer. He has made a lot of progress with the dog at home. I told the woman to make sure he teaches the dog to stand, she said he knows how to do that. So I told her to tell him to teach the dog how to stack. The trainer said only show dogs need to stack, and that I should just muzzle the dog.

                          The woman's trainer isn't real bright, is he? Putting my trainer's hat on for a moment here (yeah, I do some of that,, if her dog has a solid stand-stay, it will work the same as a stack. Of course, that's a big IF. Try it, if the dog won't do it, let the owner know.

                          Doing a 'dominant down' will usually backfire- it's only good in a select few situations, and you don't actually physically force the dog down. I find it's more mental attitude while you're working on a dog than anything....... and a muzzle if that doesn't work, plus charge that owner combat pay! <G>


                          • #14
                            Oh sorry to hear it. It really stinks when we hurt a dog. I have had so few incidents in my career and pride myself on being extra careful...(knock on wood). This past summer I was grooming a really ancient Westie who is sweet as pie....every now and then her back legs just sort of give out and she sits backwards down on the table. Well, guess where my scissors were when she decided to collapse in the rear? Yes just at the tip of her tail. I only saw a drop of blood at first and apparently she didn't feel much because she was wagging her tail and slinging blood all over the van....I have never seen that much blood! I grabbed a towel, squeezed it tight on the tail and picked her up...her mom drove us to the vet...I left the van there; gen. running and everything...didn't want to let go of the tail! I felt just awful, but the lady was so so made me feel a little better, but every time I see poor Jessie the Westie I still feel just terrible about shortening her tail a wee bit!!


                            • #15
                              Meesh, I did that exact injury to a little australian terrier a while back...a neat little V on the lower rim of the eyelid. Any closer and it would have been the eye. Scared the heck out of me. Owner wasn't quite as nice as the one you encountered, but they weren't horrible either. I still don't know how it happened. Obviously it was cut by the scissors, but when or how I do not know. After it stopped bleeding you could hardly notice it. Scared me silly though. We all have our turns with these things don't we. Been a while for me, probably my turn again soon!