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  • Aggressive Puppies

    I turned away two yorkie puppies today for grooms due to the fact the owner was an hour late, but I have agreed to try and do one of the dogs tomorrow. I did, however spend several minutes getting to know them.

    Dog1: 9 months old, never been groomed. Legs are totally matted to the skin. The owner was totally understanding but asked if i could at least trim this one's nails today because she was scratching the baby. The dog started freaking immediately when I put it on the table, and finally got it calmed down enough to use groomer's helper but seconds later the dog starting flipping and rolling (and peeing) off the table and as I went to prevent her from falling she bit me several times and drew blood and continued to bite until I got her on the floor. this was all before I even got the nail trimmers out. No way. If I can't even keep her on the table I'm not grooming her. No one is getting near this dog with clippers of any kind unless she gets some socialization. I couldn't touch her after that under any circumstance.

    The second dog is 4 months and was snarling and growling at me from the owner's arms from moment 1. At one point I hold out my hand for the dog to sniff and it snaps multiple times. We're super busy today so I tell the owner to come back tomorrow when it'll be quieter so we can try to do this younger dog (it is also very matted in some areas), but I could not even fully examine the dog because I could barely touch it (yes those puppy teeth hurt, a lot, especially after I'd just been mauled by their other dog).

    These aren't really the first young dogs I've turned for behavior. I have to say it is almost always a Yorkshire terrier or designer small breed mix. I'm curious how those of you who say you never or rarely turn away dogs for behavior handle these types of dogs. I hate to tell people their puppy needs sedated for grooming and most honestly don't listen when I try to recommend training or a behaviorist.

    I'm not someone who enjoys the "challenge" of grooming nasty and fear aggressive dogs but I will try my best for a nice understanding client. I am also not a super experienced groomer but I can't see how forcing some of these dogs to be groomed is good for either them or myself.

  • #2
    'Small to syndrome' is a chronic problem and I find it is especially prevalent in yorkies and Maltese puppies that owners think are cute but don't want to train them.

    Just a suggestion if you decide to try them again. First, make the owner put them on the floor on leashes and leave. These little guys put on s show in front of their owners.
    And if they won't settle any after some time away from the owner and you still can't get to them send them to a get for a sedated first shave down and then try to get them used to soft brushing as it grows out. They're probably I. Pain every time someone touches them with the idea of trying to brush them out.

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    • #3
      Agree. I usually have them hand me the dog butt end first. I also let them sit in the kennel for about 10-15 mins before I touch them. Talk to them, stand in front of them, etc, etc. ( this is to see what i am actuallt dealing woth)If they get fussy at the cage I just keep on talking and standing while staring. They will give up in a few mins. once they are out I hold them like a baby. Either on one hip ( got baby holding hips) or flipped/cradled. in either position you can feel the heart beat. Just remain calm and confident, and take deep breaths. Remember they feed off of us. Once the heart rate slows dowm to normal and they are still they are "released" This is a submissive posture. If they try to climb I simple tell them I sm not a tree and cradled they go again. I have to sweet talk alot of them. This is not the only method, but I think it might help. Also, if you can do them on a slow day. They need to concentrate on you and only you

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      • #4
        If the 9 months old "puppy" is so matted because they have never been groomed before, that you can't safely and painlessly remove the mats, I would refer them to the vet to be sedated and shaved. Of course, the owners might just go find another groomer, but I would not want to be the first groomer the puppy knows and associates with all the unpleasant tugging and pulling and shaving.
        I agree that forcing them does no good. The owners must participate in brushing, paw handling and socializing the puppy. If the owners don't do their part, they can't expect you to tame the wild beast and perform miracles on matted puppies!

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        • #5
          I had a Yorkie puppy just like you have described above. I couldn't even get the grooming loop over his head the first time without him trying to eat me. I had a chat with the owner and suggested she start working with her puppy, taking collar on and off, playing with his feet, face, ears. The second time he came in was way better than the first time. Was able to take collar off, put loop over his head and groom him fine. I usually give puppies a 5 min decompress time in a crate before I even start to work with them. Gives them a chance to wind down before you start working on them.


          Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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          • #6
            Thanks for the replies. I was actually sort of able to groom the 4 month old. It took a while but he became rather insecure when dad left and kind of attached to me after some time in the crate (I had to finish another dog). the extent of what i was able to do included bath/nails and shaving of the mats only because he didn't deal with clippers or scissoring very well. I did some trimming around the face and feet to clean it up but it was not a pretty groom by any means.

            I told them about sedating the second dog and trying to get her used to being handled by other people, and I would maybe try on a mat free coat next time.

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