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, October 19, 2012

Grooming a Puppy Continued

A fellow groomer brought up a good point in a comment that she left for yesterdays post.

Thanks Jennifer.

I realized when I read her comment that I left some things out, and did not make my self clear about how I groom puppies.

I was just going to reply to Jennifer's comment, when I thought that maybe I should put my reply on a post, since most people probably don't go back and read comments.

Here is Jennifer's comment:

 Great blog post, as usual. I do many of the same things you do, with a few exceptions.

We don't have any kennels, for starters, so we have to do puppies straight through the same as every other dog.

I don't like to encourage the puppies to cling to me because I don't want them doing it their entire lives. I still use all the baby talk and hold them (gently) the best I can with my free hand. I just makes me crazy when dogs are trying to climb up my chest, on my head, and/or leap over my shoulder off the drying table, so I really don't want to encourage that.

And the pricing is interesting. Every place I've worked has charged a lower price for puppies up until 6 months. Yes, they do take longer to groom than an adult, but it tends to encourage people to bring their puppies in more frequently when they are young so they can get used to it. It can be frustrating at the time, but I always figure it's worth it down the road when the crazy puppies grow up to be well-behaved adults because they were trained early and often.

A lot of great info here for new groomers; I wish I had found something like this years ago when I was a new groomer. :-)

The Writing Groomer

I do agree with Jennifer...to a point. :)
Jennifer made me realize that my post sounded like you should let a puppy crawl all over you.
 I in no way want other groomers to encourage puppies to have bad grooming habits.
I should have said that when I like to hold and let puppies cuddle against my chest, and hide their heads in my neck and hair, it is usually for the first part of the drying process only, when the dryer is first introduced to them.

 My goal is to slowly get them down to the drying table and teach them to stand there while being dried.
I will admit, that depending on how scared the puppy is, depends on how long I will let them cling to me, but by the time I finish drying that puppy, it is usually  standing very nicely on the table.
I even let some older, insecure dogs cling to me too, but my goal is to work with them,  and eventually get them to trust me and stand on the grooming table,  not cling to me.

I totally agree with Jennifer that you do not want to encourage dogs to think that it is okay to climb up on you during a bath, or while drying and clipping. 

Everything I talked about in my puppy post was basically for the very first grooming.
By the second, or no later than the third grooming, that puppy will be trained to stand in the tub and on the table the right and safe way.
As groomers, we always need to train the puppies and dogs that we groom to stand as still as possible on the table so that there will be no accidents.
A well trained dog on the grooming table is a joy to groom.

 I also encourage groomers to try different things that will work for them.
I don't groom at all like I was taught in grooming school.
When groomers read my posts, I want them to take things away that they think will help them, but I do not want them to think that my way of grooming is the only way.

Another thing...

Jennifer had an interesting approach to pricing for puppies. 
As you have read, in her comment, she feels that charging a lower price for the puppies encourages the owners to bring the puppies in more frequently for them to get used to grooming.

A very good point.


This is why it so important for groomers to talk to each other. :)

I hope that you didn't mind me using your comment for a post Jennifer, but I felt that you brought up some really good points that needed to be shared. :)

I encurage other groomers to comment about what they do to help puppies with their first grooming.
It would be great for other groomers and new groomers to read how other groomers approach grooming puppies.

We must always be open to learning new things.
We never know it all.

I am open. :)

Happy Grooming, MFF


  1. Great blog post, and of course I don't mind you using my comment! :-) I am so glad that I found your blog and that we can inspire each other in different ways.

    Have a great weekend!


  2. Totally not on topic with puppies :) But I wanted to get my black lab/great dane looking like a cow for halloween. Think white blowpens might work on her black fur?

    1. Hi Zhitong,

      I have never seen a white blow pen.

      One groomer used Chris Christensen's White Ice on her black St. Poo to make it look like a Panda for a creative grooming at Hershey one time. It worked really nice on the black coat. Cherrybrook pet supplies carries it. Here is a link:


      Lisa, MFF

    2. Wonder if I can get my hands on it in stores somewhere, I wanted to try to do it this week :) I'm going to show her off at parks and stuff.

    3. Hi Zhitong,
      Not sure if I have ever seen Chris Christensen products in any stores. At least not around me.
      Lisa, MFF