cpoanimallogo.gif - 2752 Bytes Grooming Disasters
      ....Choosing a Dog Groomer

This is an account of the grooming disasters Buddy has encountered in our search for a good and competent groomer.

Buddy1 Buddy is a Shizu/Maltese mix. His fur tends to be long in length and fine in texture. It matts up easily if he isn't kept clipped. We understand this and really don't have a problem taking him to the groomer. Our problem is with the competence of the groomers.

Buddy's first groomer cut his hair short on the sides and legs but left it long on the face and a long puffy hairball at the end of the tail. They also shaved him underneath and in his hind area. Buddy2Granted, it was his first visit and we were ready to make adjustments at his next visit. Unfortunately the second time, even though I told them to leave his hair a bit longer on the body and shorter on the face, his cut was very similar to the first. They tried to make a few adjustments but we still didn't have quite the look we wanted. We decided to try another groomer. [Cost $22]

The next groomer was recommended by someone from Denny's workplace. We waited a little longer while trying to decide what to do. When I took him in, they told me he was too matted and would have to be shaved. I picked Buddy up a few hours later and was shocked to see our cute little dog transformed into a hairless joke. His haircut was uneven and in some places they shaved him so short that his skin showed. Even dogs with beautiful fur may have uneven skin color -such was the case with Buddy. The picture below is after his hair started growing out. He was much too homely to take a picture of him right after his haircut.

In addition to his pitiful looks, within a few hours, he started acting strange. Buddy3I thought he was mildly traumatized with his new haircut but soon noticed it was much more. When he walked, he was in pain because he would bend in an odd way and couldn't walk straight. I took him to the veterinarian and they had to give him cortizone shots. The veterinarian told me that Buddy had been burned by the razor when the groomer shaved him [especially near his back end.] Not only did he look bad, he was hurt by this groomer. When I called the groomer she did not apologize. She said it was our fault for waiting so long. I told her she should have warned me about razor burn when I picked him up. It took over a week before Buddy started walking normal.[Cost about $30 plus Vet visit / cortizone shot $35]

Buddy5 It took a while for Buddy's hair grow out to a respectable length [pictured at right]. We had to take him to a different groomer. We decided to take him back to the first one again. I liked the way they cut his legs and body length; we would make adjustments for the face and we'd dispense with the powder puff tail. He was so excited and looked great when I picked him up. They put a scarf on him and of course, he was clean, soft and smelled of powder. Yes, he was adorable [pictured below].

I was pleased with the cut until a few hours later. After the brief excitement of being home, Buddy ran into his cage and refused to come out. His cage is where he goes when he wants to sleep or to be left alone. Upon further investigation, I discovered an oozing wound about the size of a nickel on his breastbone where they had not only cut him too short, they cut into his skin.Buddy6 It was underneath that cute little scarf. I called them and they said they would reimburse me on a future grooming visit the cost of the vet visit. I was amazed, not that they had cut him [I suppose that accidents can happen] but they hid it with the scarf and didn't tell me. He was hurt again and avoided everyone for days. The sore actually got bigger before it started to heal. It took over a week to heal and he flatly refused to allow anyone to touch him near his sore to check it out or put medicine on it. Poor Buddy.

Now, I needed to find another groomer. I felt guilty taking him to groomers who weren't careful and didn't even feel an obligation to report back to me if he was wounded. I was also concerned that eventually he would become to paranoid to go to a groomer at all.

I took him to Bubbles and Bows in South Beloit. They are also a large boarding facility and pet supply store. The business is clean and friendly. Buddy didn't seem nervous when I dropped him off and when I went back to pick him up, he was excited to see me. He looked good and didn't have any cuts. I was satisfied with their grooming and handling of Buddy. We have taken him back three times and in my opinion they are the best groomer of the three.

Buddy7 My advice on selecting a Dog Groomer: Be cautious. Don't let price be your guide. Checkout the groomer and business. Ask for references. Inspect your dog after each visit. Pets are important members of our families. We wouldn't put up with a careless beautician or barber - don't tolerate carelessness in your pet's groomer.

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