About Me:

I am a professional Pet Groomer. I have been grooming for 28 years. This Blog is a kind of diary of my work. I wish I had started years ago, writing some of the experiences I have had while grooming. Most days are fun, some can be sad, some can be just down right crazy. If you are a pet owner and come across this blog, I hope it helps you understand how your pet is groomed. If you are a Pet Groomer, I hope you can relate to some of the stories. Maybe even learn a grooming tip or can leave a friendly grooming tip for me. There is always something to learn, no matter how long you have been grooming.

Friday, August 3, 2012


One of my really nice, regular customers came in the other day with her two dogs.

After we talked about her dogs, she said to me; " I have to warn you about something."
"Okay," I said, waiting for her to continue.
"My neighbor will be calling you for an appointment for her dog....TELL HER NO!" she told me, with a very stern look on her face.

I just stood there looking at her.
Worst of all, I think my mouth was open, but I wasn't sure what to say.
Was she really telling me not to groom her neighbors dog?
Thankfully she didn't notice and just kept talking.

"I mean it! You don't want to groom her dog....HE IS MEAN!" she stressed.

Finally my mouth did more than just hang open, "That is okay," I told her. "I groom mean dogs too."
She was already shaking her head before I even finished what I was saying.
"You don't understand," she continued, with a panicked look on her face. "HE BITES!"
"He's mean and nasty and he bites everybody for no reason," she explained. "We watched him for my neighbor once and he bit both me and my daughter. He broke skin, and all I was doing was moving him over on the couch."

I just stood there nodding as she continued to talk.

"He has attacked both of my dogs. He is just a very nasty dog." she finished.
"What does the owner say when her dog bites?" I asked her. "What breed of dog is he?"
"He is a Terrier of some kind, one of those Jack Russel dogs, I think, and she makes excuses for him when he bites."
"Has she had him groomed before?"
"Yes, but they asked her not to bring him back," she answered. "She had a girl coming to the house, but she won't groom him anymore either."
"Well, I do groom biters," I told her. "I give them at least one chance."
Still shaking her head she said, "I'll write her name down for you so you will know when she calls and you can tell her 'no'.

She did leave her neighbors name while continuing to tell me more stories.

Her neighbor called about an hour later for an appointment.

Did we give her an appointment?

I didn't have an opening till September...she said she would take it.

Did she mention that her dog was a biter and had been asked not to come back to other shops?


Will she tell me that her dog bites when she brings him in?

We will see.

Do I think that she will warn me about her dog?

I think that she is in denial.
I think that she thinks that it is everyone elses fault that her dog bite them.

My customer told me that her neighbors dog will bust through the door just to chase another dog down the street.
The owners excuse: 'He just wants to play.'
She said that the dog has bitten kids and adults on their street.
No one has reported this dog for some reason. :(

This owner is living on borrowed time.
Someone will sue one day.

I know that I probably sound nuts, but I am very interested in working with this dog.

What do I think?

I think that this dog is a spoiled rotten little brat that has been allowed to get his way about everything.
I think that this dog is a bully that bites to get his way and just be mean...OR...he is inbred and mentally challenged.

I will see.
I am not stupid.
I will be careful.
If I get a really bad vibe from this dog...HE WILL GO RIGHT BACK HOME.

But, I like a challenge.

Of course, it might be a lot easier to work with and train the dog to behave, than get the owner to open her eyes to her dogs bad behavior and a danger to other people and children.

I will let you know what happens.

Unfortunately, you will have to wait until September.

Happy Grooming, MFF


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Sourvixen, I think I am going to need it. :)
      Lisa, MFF

  2. What do you do about lateness?i work on my own and a couple who have a cockerpoo who will never make regular appointments rang me today to tell me they would be late 20 minutes AFTER there appointment was due, their dog is always matted to the skin and today I turned them away as i wouldnt have had time,they said I should have phoned them to see where they were!!!they were due at half 12 and rang at nearly 1am to report their lateness,then got really nasty,im a new groomer and its making me a bit despondant about my new career :(

    1. Hi,
      Sadly this is one of the discouraging parts of grooming. Rude customers that don't take their grooming appointments seriously. Of course it is only a dog.. 'what is the big deal if we are late, or cancel late, or don't show up and call later for another appointment.' It can drive you crazy, because there is really nothing that you can do. If you cancel them out because their coming late will put you behind..you lose out on money from that appointment. If you try to charge a late fee..your either in for a nasty confrontation or they will refuse to pay it and leave..once again YOU lose out on money.
      I have struggled with customers late for their appointments, late cancellations, and no shows for 28 years and still have not come up with a way to stop it.
      I know, on the boards, there are a lot of groomers that say that they turn people away for being late, but I can't afford to tell late customers to reschedule or go back home. It happens too often. I give my customers 15 minutes to show, after their appointment time, then I call them to see if they are coming. If they say that they are on their way I tell them right then that if they can get here in the next 10 minutes I can still take them but that they have now made me behind for the day and I must start my next dog, so their dog will be here longer than usual. If they ask how much longer I tell them that I have no idea, because I work by appointments and now my time is all messed up for the day.
      I say all of this very nicely, but very firmly at the same time. I want them to understand that they have messed up my work day.
      Does this help them not to come in late anymore? Some of them are very sorry and are never late again...some just can't be on time to save their lives. PEOPLE....I'll take dogs over people anytime!
      I am sorry I can't be of anymore help. After 28 years of grooming, I am still trying to come up with something myself. Hang in there and try not to let the owners bother you too much.
      Lisa, MFF

  3. I am a new dog groomer (just over a year) and the customer denial factor drives me crazy! Whether it's customers bringing in dogs who will bite for grooming or extremely dog aggressive dogs, they choose to remain unaware of how their excuses for their dog's bad behavior actually harms their pet in the long run. I work for a corporation that surrounds the salon with windows, which is not a great idea. People assume I'm hurting a dog who is trying to bite me even if I'm only picking up a foot. Worse, I've had these same customers who are in denial over bad behavior actually laugh when they see their dogs biting. It's as if I deserve to be bitten for trying to provide the service the customer asked of me. Grr.

    1. Hi,
      I really feel for you. Grooming in front of those windows has to be nerve racking. There have been times that I have been grooming a really antsy dog, that jerks themselves all over the place, and I think to myself 'if someone was watching me they would probably think that I was the one jerking the dog around the table not the other way around.' :/
      You're right it is amazing how some owners of biting dogs think it is funny that they bite, OR they think that their dog is only biting because I did something to make him bite. Your right, GRRR.
      Lisa, MFF