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  • Hybrid stripping

    I've been thinking about the dilemma of handstripping at my shop. It takes time, therefore costs money. I am able to groom 2-3 small dogs in the time it takes me to handstrip a small/medium size terrier. So I've got to price my handstrips at 2.5-3 x my base price of a small dog. That's upwards of $100 for a small breed (borders, aussies, cairns, etc). People think that's a LOT of $$$ and I agree. I've had one switch to clipping due to the price, and it just kills me to clip a nice harsh coat. Here's what I've come up with, what do you guys think?

    Offering handstripping as is at the price I'm giving now, but also giving this option if they don't want to pay the full price. Handstripping the back/body, most of the head or top of the head depending on what breed (westies, cairns vs. shnauzers, borders). Then clipping the legs, neck, bum, and belly. The parts that are often tough for dogs to deal with, are tricky to get neat, etc. For this hybrid handstripping I'll charge more than the breed styling price, probably $20-30+ more depending on size of dog. I know a lot of people do clip on their handstrip dogs, and I do on occasion after I've stripped 90% of the dog already, but don't do it on every dog because I feel like its not totally honest.

    I'm thinking this will go over big, cause you maintain the color and texture on the part of the body people touch, but can get a better look faster on these dogs so you don't have to charge as much. Everyone's happy: groomer doesn't have as much work and a better looking dog faster, client still gets handstripped look for less $$$, dog is at shop less time and still gets benefits from handstripping. Can't wait to hear everyone's opinions.
    Erin
    No Fur, No Paws, No Service.

  • #2
    I say it's marvelous...whatever works....but you are going to give your "Auntie Beth" a fainting spell! Aw, she ain't that old...she'll recover! She'll shoot you, and that will speed up her recovery!
    Often it's not what you say, but how you say it.

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    • #3
      Possibly, but I know some of her tricks, and I think she'll approve of this method, though she'll probably just tell me to charge the same, lol.
      Erin
      No Fur, No Paws, No Service.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by ejmj30 View Post
        Possibly, but I know some of her tricks, and I think she'll approve of this method, though she'll probably just tell me to charge the same, lol.
        Well then, by Gawd gal...charge the same!!!!! Seriously....why wouldn't you? And don't give me some emotional mish-mash that you found a way to save a few minutes! LOL! If you charge less...people feel they are getting less. If you are turning out the same ole spectacular lookin grooms...but found an easier way to do it...why should that "cost" you? (Quizzical face....cuz I don't know how to plug that one in. )
        Often it's not what you say, but how you say it.

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        • #5
          So I gotta question for ya erin--or anybody else who can answer it. I have the Irish Terrier Clancy that I handstrip who is HORRIBLE for his chest and legs so I'm really into your idea of clipping those areas. Will that in any way ruin the coat texture at all though??? Like you, I could never charge enough to really make it worth my while but if I could at least make it easier on both me and Clancy I'm willing to take a couple of short cuts.
          ~*~*~Shawn, C.M.G.~*~*~
          Apparently common sense isn't all that common
          *~*~emipoo on egroomer*~*~*

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          • #6
            I do some of what you are saying. I clip out pads, sanitary, and thin shear sensitive areas that each particular dog doesn't deal well with. They are pets, and their comfort is important too. Most dogs is rear end and throat areas. I charge by the hour for hand stripping though. Clients know the hourly charge, and some just choose to have me work on the dog for an hour, etc. I include bathing, nails, etc. in the hourly price. I do have a minimum of 1 hour charge for a strip dog though. Many of my handstrip clients "work" on their dogs at home some too. I don't do a lot of rolling coats though. I generally just pull out everything that is coming out, and then shape what is left with thinners, as its pulled out the next time. But I don't see my handstrip dogs that often..between 3-6 months would be about average for them, and in the spring, if the coat is ready, its undies for them.

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            • #7
              Another Idea

              Have you ever used the under coat rakes by mars & oysters?
              If you haven't then you might won't to look into them, they can leave the coat as is and take the hassle out of doing the whole body & just strip the head, tail and some legs. I've been using snice they come out & they leave the coat very close to being as thery are meant to be.

              Just a thought.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Randy LaFoy View Post
                Have you ever used the under coat rakes by mars & oysters?
                If you haven't then you might won't to look into them, they can leave the coat as is and take the hassle out of doing the whole body & just strip the head, tail and some legs. I've been using snice they come out & they leave the coat very close to being as thery are meant to be.

                Just a thought.
                I do this too,for a cheating type strip,I find I can tell when I've removed the undercoat,then I use my stripping knives, and do the top, I know it is not correct, but am trying to find a 1/2 method,that doesn't ruin a nice harsh coat, seems to be working for me. I would not promise any client an expert terrier handstrip,as I know my way is definetly a pet type option. I use the blenders over comb to shorten jacket areas too.
                "Everyone needs something to beleive in..I beleive I need another Poodle"
                Quote:Cath

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                • #9
                  Moon, yes, chances are if you clipper those sensitive areas on your Irish, it will soften the coat. I have 2 irish's I strip, and neither like that area done. I use thinners on both of them in those spots. The male Irish has soft coat there, but the female still grows in a harsh, strippable coat after the thinning shears. So it depends on the dog, but the owners need to be prepared for the soft coat there. That area is supposed to be VERY short anyway, so it really doesn't matter on a pet if the throat and chest is soft in my opinion. I would rather softer coat, and a happy pet.

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                  • #10
                    Thank you! I do use the thinners as much as possible but never thought long and hard about it to ask if it was "acceptable" without ruining the coat. From here on out I'll use my thinners



                    Originally posted by Graco22 View Post
                    Moon, yes, chances are if you clipper those sensitive areas on your Irish, it will soften the coat. I have 2 irish's I strip, and neither like that area done. I use thinners on both of them in those spots. The male Irish has soft coat there, but the female still grows in a harsh, strippable coat after the thinning shears. So it depends on the dog, but the owners need to be prepared for the soft coat there. That area is supposed to be VERY short anyway, so it really doesn't matter on a pet if the throat and chest is soft in my opinion. I would rather softer coat, and a happy pet.
                    ~*~*~Shawn, C.M.G.~*~*~
                    Apparently common sense isn't all that common
                    *~*~emipoo on egroomer*~*~*

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                    • #11
                      For this hybrid handstripping, I'm not talking about the little bits of chest, throat, bum, pads, and sani, that I already clip. I'm talking about 1/2 the dog...either strip the whole dog mostly and then neaten with clippers, OR strip the head, top of neck, and body and clip the legs.

                      I'm charging what I feel I'm worth for handstripping, the problem is its a hard pill for me to swallow every time I charge it, lol. I know get over it. Also, I have some people who were at my old pricing and when they are informed of the new pricing decide to do clipping. If I can offer this hybrid style and not do as much work as a full handstrip, but they get the look and feel they're after I think we'll both win. The option is still there for the full, pure handstrip.

                      This concept also applies to dogs with skirts/furnishings: westies, norfolks, etc. Technically you're supposed to pluck the long stuff out of the skirt, but with the hybrid I could trim it with thinners and not feel bad. Mostly I'm thinking of this option cause I feel like I'm being dishonest or cheating if I use thinners on anything other than the throat and bum which I inform owners ahead of time that I do.
                      Erin
                      No Fur, No Paws, No Service.

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