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  • Not new to but it has been a while....

    Hey everyone! I have been grooming 20 years about to have my 21st this summer. Through all the ups and downs, bumps and bruises and a few bites and scratches in between, I still absolutely love the dogs!!!!! My only problem is with some of the clients, actually not many at all, having learned through the years how to handle most of them, the dog's are the easy part! I have one issue bothering me right now with a client I never even spoke to, yes, that was definitely the first problem and this may be better suited for a forum topic, I will put it out there too. A very sweet older man dropped off his coton for a groom, first time... well, she was extremely matted, except of course for her back. I let him know that she was really matted and the only option I had was to shave her, it would be way too much to try to dematt her. He was hesitant but said it was okay and to do what I had to do. Well, the wife picked her up and threw a fit with the receptionist, she paid but called back wanting a refund, that her last groomer would take the time to brush her out. I dont mind taking the time, if they are willing to pay but not if it is going to hurt the dog! So, my manager did the right thing and did not refund her money. She called back today, 4 weeks later and said that her regular groomer she had to dirve all the way across town back to, apparently can tell if a dog has been abused, because the dog had been acting strange the last 4 weeks since I groomed her bald, scared to have the owner put a leash on her now, ect..., noticed marks on her neck and that I must have noosed her on the table and abused her! In my head, I know this woman is a total nut but even after twenty years, I am really hurt by her accusations. By the way, when all this first happened, my manager offered to let the lady speak to me and she did not want to talk to me. I feel that I should have the right to defend myself. I would never hurt an animal and if this other groomer really did say that I abused this dog, I am appalled! Any suggestions on how I should deal with this? I do not want to be slandered by this client or her groomer that is apparently okay with torturing her dog to give the client the hair on her dog that she wants. Do I just let this go or do I stand up and defend myself?

  • #2
    I think with people like this, you just have to let it go. I have had simular things like this, and as upsetting as it can be, if you don't let go of it, it will drive you mad.

    There was one time about 10 years ago when I was a grooming mgr. in a petsomething and I was having to shave the feet on a springer that had no desire to have his feet clipped. I was trying to be easy on him, but he was really pulling at my joints. Since there are windows, a woman was watching and she came in telling me how hard I was being on this dog, that was stressing my arms and hands to the max and threatened to call animal control. I told her to go ahead. She did not.

    A few years ago in my own shop I groomed a dog, in which I thought was fine, as I think it was a shih-tzu, and not in very good shape. My shop is next door to a barber shop, so I am use to people parked out front in their cars waiting for people in the barber shop, in the mean while they can which us groom.

    Well, one day I get a letter telling me that these people with this dog set out front and watched me groom a dog and I was being hard on it. I was able to figure out what day they had been out there and it was a day the I did a schn. that is quite hipper and spoiled and doesn't hold still, but I really like the dog, so there was no way that I would have ever been hard on her.

    These people said that they could only imagine what their dog went thru while I was grooming him, and they would make sure the everyone knew how abusive I was. Nothing ever came of it. I ignored the letter, although it upset me very much.

    Our whole front of our shop is windows and we have gotten a lot of complements on how good we are with the dogs. These two incidents were freak things, like yours is. I think the lady was just trying to get her money back in your case. She didn't want to except that she had let her dog get in that bad of shape, and is trying to turn it on you, making you look bad.


    • #3
      New matted clients....ugggh!

      The other thought is that this little dog is probably rather sensitve,(living with a lady like this...!)
      the lady very likely fussed over the poor dog so much that it became nervous and frightened around the woman.

      This is not uncommon when a dog is shaved A/O. The dog is feeling chilled due to the fact it has no coat. It is feeling relieved from the lack of tight matts. If the owner isn't aware of the importance of treating their dog as normal as possible after a shave down, it is very likely the dog will act like she has reported. This something I stress VERY strongly to the family when I have to an A/O strip; don't laugh at the dog or treat it any differently. Perhaps give it a few extra treats just for good measure.

      As for the marks on her neck...hmm after 4 weeks they showed up. I doubt it. This lady can't let it go, she allowed the dog to get badly matted. I bet the husband hasn't heard the end of this either.

      Maybe you should've spoke to her when she called to complain, but if you hadn't been prepared for her ranting you might've responded poorly. Was a "Severely Matted Release Form" signed? this might've been a big help in avoiding the headache! Why was she at your business instead of her "regular" groomer anyway?

      Relax and put it down as another lesson in dealing with the public, especially new clients!



      • #4
        Thanks for the respnses! I know I have to let it go and I know I did everything right, it just still hurts my feelings, I guess. It does make me appreciate so much more all the wonderful clients I do have. I know what you mean too about her fretting over her dog to the point that it upset the dog. I also stress to clients to always treat them the same after a stripdown as they would a beautifully scissored cut, especially when they have kids. This woman really is a nut and at least I wont have another nutty client on my list now, lol!!! I just still hate it that we good groomers out there are slandered in such a way and can only hope the rest of the world can see through these types of people. Thanks again, I feel much better now!