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I would be up for trying that next time I get a really matted dog in the shop. I don't have a recirculating bathing system though but I wonder if it could still work.

I saw Cameo post something awhile ago about making your own from parts you buy at a hardware store and a pump online but I would have no idea how to put something like that together.

The husky came out beautiful. Considering how difficult those coats are to get even and smooth she looks fantastic and i'm sure the owner was thrilled.
 

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Whoever posted to bathe mats and all is not correct imo. Why would you bathe a dog with mats that are skin tight? It makes them tighter for 1 and creates a huge mess and shaving a wet dog is not fun....getting a dog dry comepletely after bathing it with mats is a mess and makes things so much more difficult on you.

If a dog is matted it gets shaved down then bathed where i used to work.

Oh and to the OP great job on shaving that old guy! Im sure he feels like a million bucks and looks amazing! On an old dog like that its easier to just shave them down as fast as possible (giving breaks if necessary) and then bathe and let em air dry lol. No sense putting an old dog threw a bunch of brushing and stress if you dont have to. My 15 year old dog doesnt tolerate grooming that long anymore so i run over her with an E comb do light scissoring and voila she is done and it only took about 15 mins.
 

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he looks much better. i'm so so so against shaving collies/aussies (i see it done all the time drives me nuts) but there's cases like this where he NEEDED it done.

good job!
 

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Discussion Starter #44
Whoever posted to bathe mats and all is not correct imo. Why would you bathe a dog with mats that are skin tight? It makes them tighter for 1 and creates a huge mess and shaving a wet dog is not fun...

On an old dog like that its easier to just shave them down as fast as possible (giving breaks if necessary) and then bathe and let em air dry lol. No sense putting an old dog threw a bunch of brushing and stress if you dont have to. My 15 year old dog doesnt tolerate grooming that long anymore so i run over her with an E comb do light scissoring and voila she is done and it only took about 15 mins.
totally agree :) thanks
 

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The wet shaving method has been around for awhile. I don't think groomers would be doing it if they were tearing up the blades and clippers after every few grooms.

I've heard it mentioned on groomers.net and seen amazing results with it but never attempted it myself..although I kind of want to if I can ever get a recirculating bathing system.

At Petco they always shaved dogs before bathing as well..and i remember having to send my blades out it seemed like way too often to be sharpened..it was a pain..i ended up ordering another set of blades just because of the hassle. I believe it was all the dirt and such getting into the blades that was doing the damage.

Now I rarely ever shave a dirty dog. I always bathe them first and then shave down if it's what im going to do anyway..the life of my blades has been extended by quite a bit. I don't get them sharpened nearly as often.

I also like how smooth the Husky came out. We had a husky come in and the groomer couldnt get a 7 through it. She eventually got the dog shaved but he looked horrible..choppy..uneven..and it took forever. I imagine if she knew about the wet shaving process it could have possibly been avoided.
 

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I'm sorry Mister, but pre-shaving dogs before a bath, in a grooming salon, is fairly old fashioned now days. I'm not tlaking about this instance with the collie, as I think a good job was done with him!!! I'm talking about in a salon now.

Bathing a dog does NOT tighten the knots up with the equipment we have now days. It USED to; with old fashioned hand scrubbing and only lil fluff dryers to dry them, it was NECESSARY to pre-shave and brush out every dog that walked through the door. Unfortunately because it is so ingrained in so many people that it is necessary to do it this way, it continues to be taught that it's necessary to pre-shave everything, when in reality it isn't! The only dogs I pre-shave are the really really hairy dogs that are being shaved short anyway. In particular the cockers that aren't knotted, but are hairy and getting shaved down really short cos cocker coats are an ass to dry anyway so I pre-shave them before the bath. But all the lil dogs (poodles, bichons, maltese, shih and the various crosses of them all) go straight into the bath without any brushing or clipper work done on them at all. A good shampoo and HV and THEN I set to work on grooming them. Matted dogs go straight into the tub too, for a wet shave.

Check out petgroomerforums for more info on wet shaving and bathing dogs first etc etc and other testimonials to it too if you don't believe me ;)
 

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A wet shave is great when the mats are really tight and you'd have to go REALLY short otherwise. Plus, the blade doesn't heat up if your working on a wet coat.

I rarely ever preshave a dog. You'd really be surprised how easily the matting brushes out when the coat is clean and properly set up. The HV dryer actually helps to loosen up tightly matted areas, which makes brushing out A LOT easier. Bathing itself, doesn't tighten mats, but letting the coat cage dry will make them tighten up.
 

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Making your own recirculating bathing system is EASY as 1 2 3

I'll try to attach pics, but what I did was, bought a 1/6 hp Water Ace brand utility pump, a 6' leader water hose, and a nozzle from a watering wand. Screwed on the hose and the nozzle and put some nylon screen on the bottom of the pump (or you can slide a panty hose or stocking on it) and it was ready to bath. It cost me around $65 to make my own and it's been running great for nearly 2 years.
 

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I also made my own recirculator but I hated it so much, I quit using it after a week. It tipped over cause the dog kept knocking into it.

I think its the FOREVER STAINLESS company that makes this really nice bathtub that has its own "well" that the pump sit in but the water circulated in the stainless tub.

My tub is a human bathtub/shower. It does not have a thingy that you flip up to make the water stay IN.....the water always drains. I use one of those flat rubbery things over the drain grate when I have to do a medical soak...but I also have to put a FULL gallon of heavy shampoo on that thing to hold it down tight against the grate.
 

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P2P, I have a tub grate to keep the dogs up out of the water and my recirc sits down in the tub, I run some water into it and a couple squirts of shampoo and go at it! The dogs are up out of the water and I can get their feet rinsed clean and leave no shampoo residue :) I really LOVE having a recirculating bather, especially for the big and/or hairy dogs. Saves shampoo, is VERY fast bathing and rinsing, and gets them super clean!

Over time (when I worked in another place where we had no grate), I've found that dogs who's feet are not rinsed clean, will lick and chew their feet. When I opened my salon, I got a grate (raised platform) for the dogs to stand on and I have only a few feet-lickers (know it's not from not getting their feet clean). When working at the other salon, we had TONS of dogs that licked and chewed their feet and I don't know if there is any correlation or not, but like I said, I have very few that come in to my salon on a regular basis.
 

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I have to put my 2 cents in here, because I was really skeptical of the wet shaving method until I got a dog in that was so matted I decided to try it. I don't know how I would have done it any other way, and it took half the time. I was much easier on the dog. His feet were so tight the circulation was being effected. I've since done it on several dogs and I love it.

Awesome job on the BC. He has to feel better!!!
 

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I would never wet shave a dog and drying even with ahigh velocity drier would take too long with a heaviliy matted dog (im talking when you shave its like shearing a sheep). Why not just shave before the bath since they are tight before and if they are so matted the skin isnt really exposed and the bath isnt doing much good. Im not about to try to save any hair on that dog except maybe the tail or some hair on the head or manybe the ears. Its not the dogs fault the owners didnt brush it so im not putting the dog through the time and pain it takes to dematt and brush through all of that. Call me crazy but in my head thats tyhe logical way to do it and i might be old fashioned in that sense but it saves a lot of time and saves the dog from not feeling dicomfort from the tugging and dematting.
 

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I would never wet shave a dog and drying even with ahigh velocity drier would take too long with a heaviliy matted dog (im talking when you shave its like shearing a sheep). Why not just shave before the bath since they are tight before and if they are so matted the skin isnt really exposed and the bath isnt doing much good. Im not about to try to save any hair on that dog except maybe the tail or some hair on the head or manybe the ears. Its not the dogs fault the owners didnt brush it so im not putting the dog through the time and pain it takes to dematt and brush through all of that. Call me crazy but in my head thats tyhe logical way to do it and i might be old fashioned in that sense but it saves a lot of time and saves the dog from not feeling dicomfort from the tugging and dematting.
Mister, it's not always about saving hair, sometimes it's about saving the DOG'S SKIN! A wet coat is a heavy coat and when mats are weighed down, they pull AWAY from the skin and it makes it much safer to get the blade under it (less chance of nicking in tight spots). Think about those areas that are prone to nicks and cuts being casted with mats and now imagine actually being able to get a blade under it :) Not to mention, a wet coat is MUCH less prone to irritation from close clippering, as well as, the blade running thru it stays cooler. When you are working on a LARGE dog, that is worth it right there!

Never say never :) As a groomer, we must be open to trying all the methods available in order to be the MOST HUMANE, for the pet's sake. Wet shaving is just another trick in our arsenal. I may not use it EVERY time I get a pelted dog, but there are times when it's really the best choice. As for getting the dog clean, you can always run them back thru the wash after, if you feel it didn't get clean the first time around.

As a professional, I want my passion to reflect in the work I produce and while sometimes "peeling the onion" is unavoidable, it is preferable (for ME) to make the dog looks as nice as it can look given the situation because they are a reflection of my reputation. If it's within my capabilities to make a pelted dog look a bit prettier, you better believe I'm going to do whatever it takes (within reason) as long as it's not inhumane.
 

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Will the water ruin the clippers? Will it rust the blades? These are my worries. I've done only slightly damp dogs because they just would NOT come dry and my blades rusted, even oiling and using a force dryer on them after and cleaning the hair out.
 

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When you are done oil your blades good and they are fine. I spray mine really good with coolant and then oil for extra protection when I was done. No problem. My clippers were fine. It can be messy, but is saves so much stress on the dog and time also. Your blades don't get hot either.

The dog should be rinsed, but dripping wet. On one I did I had to rewet the last parts I did. I don't know what shape his legs would have been in if I'd done it dry. The matts peeled off like a sock. I've read some articles that say it really does a number on your blades, but I don't think so. Thats been 2 months ago and I'm still using that blade. That is why you bathe the dog. You want to get the skin clean. Don't worry about the coat.
 

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Reesemom, I do my wet shves different than you. I make them very lubricated either with shampoo OR conditioner. If I get to an area that is sorta just wet, but not slippery enough, I put a squirt of diluted shampoo down at the skin....I use it like shaving cream. Once its all off, I shampoo again and use my rubber curry so as to not scrape the skin and make it too pink. I use enough pressure to slough off all the dead skin cells....I use whatever each dog needs.
 

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I've never had a problem with my blades either, I give them a blast with the HV and oil them again of course, but I've never had a problem with rusting or anything. I can say that it's rather different to doing a damp dog too, damp unmatted hair clogs, WET matted hair slips off, and no problem for the blades.

Go easy on the coolant reesmom, check out some of the articles on here for the reasons why: The Blade Guyz
 

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GOOD quality blades shouldn't rust, but I've never used the off brands (top performance/master groomer, etc), but the Buttercut, Laube, Wahl, and Andis blades I use have never rusted from wet shaving. I feel it's actually EASIER on your blades than clippering thru dirty coat. Just make sure to dry them off and oil them well after your are finished.
 

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Reesemom, I do my wet shves different than you. I make them very lubricated either with shampoo OR conditioner. If I get to an area that is sorta just wet, but not slippery enough, I put a squirt of diluted shampoo down at the skin....I use it like shaving cream. Once its all off, I shampoo again and use my rubber curry so as to not scrape the skin and make it too pink. I use enough pressure to slough off all the dead skin cells....I use whatever each dog needs.
I'll have to try that. I watched a video of the lady that supposedly started wet shaving and just followed her instructions. I'll give your way a try.

Thanks FD. Great articles.
 
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