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  • Grooming when the parent isn't home

    Hi everyone. I am new to the mobile part of my grooming career. In my research I've read a lot of mobile groomers will make arrangements with their clients to stop by and groom their dogs when the client is not home. Obviously there would need to be a trust factor between the client and me, but what are some of your experiences with this?

  • #2
    I have alot of clients that aren't home to groom the dog. I usually ask them to put the dogs in a mud room so I'm not running all over their house looking for Fido. One time I was under the owners bed trying to get his pups..not a comfortable position..pun intended.

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    • #3
      I do this for a lot of customers. I like to meet the owners the first time and they can meet me. We go over my policy form, they read and sign it. I meet the dog and I show them the van. We discuss where the dog will be and how I will be getting into the house (key, garage code or open door.) If I'm not sure how much the dog will cost they leave a blank signed check or cash. Yes, they do. I leave a note with what I did and a card with their next appointment.

      Some people are not comfortable with this. I do try to work around their schedule if I can but sometimes it doesn't work out.

      I'm pretty trustworthy. lol I'm just extra careful when I leave that all doors are shut, garage doors down, ect. This is a really good way to go. You can groom the dog and be in and out. Especially for me. I love to chit chat.
      www.gomobileandsucceed.com
      http://thesuccessfulpetgroomer.com

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      • #4
        I actually prefer it, that way, you can "juggle" your schedule if need be. Some of my clients put their dogs in a cage, others in a room, others loose. No problem, just remind the client to put the check on the kitchen coounter. I think some of my clients forget when I'm coming, then they just mail me my check when they see that Fluffy has been groomed and my receipt is on their kitchen counter. My receipt always has their next appt written and circled.

        Happy Sneaking In

        Dolly's Barking Bubbles, LLC

        www.dollysbarkingbubbles.com

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        • #5
          Been mobile for many years and the majority of my clients are not home, as a matter of fact, I have never even met one of my clients. Been doing the dog for 4 years, LOL! After the first few visits ask them if they would be okay with leaving you a key or a garage code. Most are more than happy to do so, once you build a reputation, no hassles or worries, and when they come home Fluffy is smelling great. My clients love it because the dogs have a potty break too. I always take them potty before and after the groom. And don't forget treats for all.

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          • #6
            It's very similar to pet sitting.

            Usually it's a good idea to have just one appointment where you meet, greet, and groom. If all goes well, they can give you a key and then when making appointments set up a appointment window.

            We figure out a place in the house where I can pick up my pay, and if they want changes to their normal groom they either let me know via phone or leave a note. I always call to tell them I finished their appointment and their pet looks great. If for whatever reason there was an extra charge for something like matting, I let them know and state it will be added to the next bill.

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            • #7
              I have several clients that aren't home when I groom. Usually they give me a key and leave a check on the counter. I leave their next appointment on the counter and any notations I've made about their pet (fleas,ticks,skin ,etc.). Works out really well. Yes, there has to a trust factor but I've never had a problem with that. Those are the folks who really know how to make mobile a real convenience.
              ~*~Robin~*~
              "In a perfect world, every dog would have a home and every home would have a dog."

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              • #8
                When I was grooming full time I did a fair number whose OWNERS were not home when I would arrive. The dogs would be confined either in their crates or in the laundry room and the leashes and collars right there. I would leave the invoice on the kitchen counter, and most would have their check ready and sitting there for me to pick up.

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                • #9
                  Hi...I also have several clients that allow me to groom their pets while they are not home. I have keys to a couple of houses, but usually pets are left either in the back yard or garage (while the weather is cooler of course). I do like to meet first time clients and their owners, so I always ask that someone is home at our first groom appointment..helps the dogs not be quite as scared....It all depends on how comfortable you are with your client and their owners.... If you have keys to their house, make sure you have them sign some kind of form..I use my petsitting form.
                  Good Luck

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                  • #10
                    What verbiage do you all use to introduce the idea of grooming while the client is not home? I have been suggesting it but, so far nobody was interested.
                    "We are all ignorant--we merely have different areas of specialization."~Anonymous
                    People, PLEASE..It's ONLY a website!~Me

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                    • #11
                      Verbiage

                      The subject usually comes up for me if my clients can't seem to fit me into their schedule. I will suggest that once the first meet and greet is done, I can come to them while they are not home. I then schedule a non groom meet and greet with them at a time that is convenient for them...we all get to know each other, agreements signed..meet the dogs, etc. and we go from there.
                      For my clients that I have had for a while, they usually suggest it and will tell me where the key is and what to do with the dog when I am done.
                      No problems so far...Let's hope it stays that way.... :-)

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                      • #12
                        Just be careful, I was at a house the same time the cleaning lady was a while ago and the owner wasn't home. Several weeks later I get a phone call from her asking if the cleaning lady had her daughter with her that day, turns out an Ipod came up missing. She told me that she noticed the ipod missing and when she called the lady to ask her about it the lady denied even seeing it laying around. Fast forward two weeks later the cleaning lady came again and the Ipod mysteriously shows back up.

                        The reason the homeowner wanted to know if the lady had her daughter with her is because she was thinking the daughter stole it and the lady found it and brought it back but didn't want to admit her daughter stole it. Or that the lady stole it herself and realized she was caught when the homeowner called her. All I can say is THANK GOD it turned up...because I could have been blamed for it too. That always worries me, that somebody will misplace something and blame it on me. This situation was a little too close for comfort.

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                        • #13
                          I have several clients that I have never met, they got my name from a good friend etc.

                          We accept credit cards so for most of these clients they have a card on file with us and we just charge it after the appointment.

                          When new clients call I ask them several questions (remember we have several vans so I am talking in general about how mobile grooming works)-
                          Is there a day that generally works best?
                          --if they say weekend because they work, I will offer "I understand and once you get to know your groomer you may decide to give her a garage code or key, we have a lot of clients who like this and she can groom Gracy while you are at work. Clients love this because they can come home to nice and clean pup".

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                          • #14
                            my own rules

                            I don't like to go into someone's house without a reminder call the night before. This could make for an uncomfortable situation, so I always make sure they know they are on the schedule.

                            I only like to do this for people that I know, if a new client calls and asks for this, I will make arrangements to meet them and groom their dog off my usual schedule to make sure this will work out for me and them. Also to make sure I got the style right for them, etc.

                            I always reassure folks that I take the dog in the yard or on a leash for a potty break so the dog doesn't make a mess in the house after i leave. maybe they don't normally get breaks during the day, but they don't get groomed with warm water every day. It's just common courtesy to them and the dog.

                            I also will call them after the first groom to make sure they were satisfied and this helps create a little more trust with them too.

                            It is great to do this, because it cuts down on alot of the chat time with the client. Not that I mind talking to them, I myself can be the chatty cathy, but I am so much more productive.

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                            • #15
                              I love my "not there" clients

                              for the same reason Wet Noze does, chit chat! I can talk the paint off the walls if given the chance lol. It definately makes it faster in that regard. I have people who leave keys, and a few keys on me. I do the meet and greet thing the first time or two so everyone gets to know one another. I tell people that i'm not stupid, I have a family and a career and I wouldn't never jeopardize that. Also, I would NOT do well in prison! I value my freedom, and if someone cops a 'tude w/me, I tend to cop one back, and if you "touch" me, i'll hit you right back and then time would be extended.....yadda yadda yadda. You have nothing in your house that I need. I have my own diamonds, (shows wedding rings), 3 flat screen tv's, and my own narcotics lol. I also have clients that I can refer them to for reassurance. If our schedules don't sync and you don't want to leave a key, hasta la vista!

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