...really backfires sometimes.
I like tiring to teach my customers how to take care of their dogs coat between grooming's.
Some are open to it, some are not.
You can always tell the owners that have no interest in learning.
Their eyes glaze over, and they stare at you with that blank look on their face.
I usually end that conversation fairly quickly.
Then there are the customers who soak up everything you tell them.
They ask questions, and really seem interested in keeping up with their dogs coat.
I have had dogs come into me for the very first time with a very matted coat, I tell the owner that the dog has to be taken short, and we will can start over again.
When they come to pick the dog up, I show them a brush and comb, I show them how to brush their dog, tell them how often they should brush, and tell them not to bathe their dog if they can't get all of the mats out.
I have had a lot of the first time matted dogs turn into really great customers that never bring the dog in matted again. :)
I have also found that this education can backfire.
Some of my customers have tried to follow my instructions only to cause the dog to develop very bad habits, such as biting the brush, or rolling over every time you try to brush.
Some dogs, who never minded being groomed, utterly hate it now.
I have two dogs, one Yorkie, and one Maltese that have very bad eye crust issues.
I have told each of these owners how to clean the eyes between groomings, and they do try...unfortunately.
I have found out that both of the owners of these dogs, husband and wife, tag team when trying to clean out the eyes.
One pins the dog down, while the other tries to clean out the eyes.
Tries being the operative word here.
One husband and wife team tells stories of putting on heavy winter gloves and coats, so that the dogs teeth can't get to their skin. :p
No wonder it takes me about 20 minutes to get these dogs to trust me just to clean out the eyes when they come in for grooming.
In these cases, I think it would be better if they just left the eyes along.
I have posted about this little one a couple of times before.
The last time was about the note her Mom sent me after one of her grooms.
I have never told this owner that her puppy is bad, she is just being a puppy and learning how to behave on the table.
But, her Mom is embarrassed that her puppy is so wiggly on the table.
They have really been trying to get her to except the brushing, but they have taught her all of the bad habits.
She bites and tries to play with the brush.
She rolls over on her back when you are trying to brush her.
She now hates being brushed.
She has been getting shorter and shorter with each grooming.
Her Mom just can not get her to accept the brushing.
And, I can't get her Mom to brush her dog the way that I taught her. :/
When her Mom brought her in for her most recent grooming, she had a baggy for me.
The baggy had treats in it and a little stuffed squeaky toy.
As the Shih-tzu was manically washing my face with little kisses, her owner pulled the toy out of the baggy and held it up to me with a very serious look on her face.
"If she tries to bit you or the brush use this toy, it squeaks," and she squeaked the toy to show me.
"See!! It gets her attention." she told me, all excited.
I nodded my head, and smiled.
Very seriously, she continued; "now you use it, it will help you."
"Okay," I said, still smiling.
I did not have the heart to tell her that I didn't need the squeaky toy.
It was so nice that she was thinking about me and trying to help me.
She is doing much better with the grooming.
Still wiggly, but better. :)
Oh, that topknot on the head isn't going anywhere any time soon.
The husband doesn't care how short I take the dog as long as I leave that ponytail in the top of the head.
It's good to have customers who care.
I just wish, that sometimes, I could be there to show them the right way, before they ruin the dog for grooming.
Happy Grooming, MFF