I'm not really sure if there's any requirement for groomers here. I know there is a lot of variation in how they are trained. That's why it can be very risky when you don't know if a groomer will treat your dog well and do a good job with the clip. I have heard a lot of horror stories. I wish we had some sort of requirements for dog breeding where parent dogs must be health tested. It still seems like it might be better here than in the UK though from what I've heard.Since Isabelle was a wee pup, they had her cut with this kind of fluffy snout? style. I had always seen shaved faces in America, and had originally wanted it for sanitary reasons (No water or food residue). I had them shave her feet two or three times over the years, but she didn't like it when the hair grew back (maybe itchy, according to the vet) and she started licking and scratching at her feet, so I gave up. Have you ever heard about that itchiness around the face?
Over here, there is no 'tipping system' for restaurants, hair salon, groomers, or taxis, so I think the basic grooming prices may be a little higher than other countries.
One thing over here, most shops have an in-house test before grooming school graduates are allowed to handle customer's dogs. I heard it takes a few years to rise to the ranks of grooming poodles/ bischon frizes etc. Another thing, I think, is that before a groomer is allowed to open a salon, they have to have a certain number of years working in a salon as well as some other qualifications relating to care of pets; vet technician, dog handler etc.
Is it the same in your area? (They also started this system for all dog breeders. Without this license it is illegal to sell any puppies your dog might have.)
As far as the itching, it is very common for them to itch at first when any new area is shaved, especially if it is shaved very short. There's a few methods to reduce this. First, you can first shave them less close (like with a 10 blade) and then work your way down with a 15 and then 30 blade (if you want). That lets the skin get used to it slowly. You can also brush off or blow off the feet after shaving to remove stray hair particles that can cause itching. You can also use something to soothe the skin like vitamin E oil. Pale colored poodles have more sensitive skin than dark poodles, and many people opt to not shave them as close so that the skin won't get irritated. But you can still usually use a 10 blade safely. If it's something you want to do, I'm sure we could help you troubleshoot it. The fluffy face look is very cute, but yes you are right that it is higher maintenance in terms of cleaning. Especially with a white poodle!