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Discussion Starter · #101 ·
I think she would look fabulous with a short tail to go with the short rest of her. Sporty and fabulous!
Lol. I think she just read your post somehow, because she’s suddenly sitting like this:

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I’ll let the base grow out a little more and then try sporty & fabulous. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #102 ·
Today I got out the clippers and Peggy hopped off the bed, where she was snoozing in the sun with my husband, to come investigate. I put a towel down on the dining room table, and after just a moment’s hesitation, she hopped right up and laid down. Loving this new system.

With a pocket full of her “treat kibble,” I tackled her topknot, which had been getting in her eyes. Since I still don’t have shears, I used my Bravura on the shortest setting, using my fingers as a guard while I shaped it. The results are far from perfect, but with Peggy so much calmer now, I was able to step back and study my work a bit:

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Next session = a deep scrub! She’s getting a little grimy. And then I want to take her body down further, lose the botched pompon, and shape her paws. I’ve decided to let the hair grow out on top and just focus on cleaning up her pads.

Good girl, Peggy.

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Yay! I love reading your grooming updates and the pics. You did a good job with her topknot using the bravura. It’s so awesome that Peggy is becoming more comfortable and willingly jumps on the table!

I thinks it’s fun to zip off the body hair with the clippers, it’s like instant gratification!

Shaving feet is my least favorite aspect of grooming, the only part of hair cutting I really dislike. I only do it as often as when her paw pads need to be cleared. Gettting the tops and around the nails takes a lot of focus and physical strain.
 

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I recently bought a bravura with money I got for Christmas. I consider it a gift so I feel justified with my purchase! It’s dizzying to add up all I’ve spent on grooming supplies, but I’ve already well surpassed what I would’ve paid to those hard working groomers. But you’re right, it is an investment.

I LOVE it for face and feet since it doesn’t get hot. It’s light and convenient so I am better about shaving her face regularly.

The only con that I read about is the fragility and quick dulling of the 5 in 1 blade. and they’re expensive to replace.
 

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Discussion Starter · #106 ·
I recently bought a bravura with money I got for Christmas. I consider it a gift so I feel justified with my purchase! It’s dizzying to add up all I’ve spent on grooming supplies, but I’ve already well surpassed what I would’ve paid to those hard working groomers. But you’re right, it is an investment.

I LOVE it for face and feet since it doesn’t get hot. It’s light and convenient so I am better about shaving her face regularly.

The only con that I read about is the fragility and quick dulling of the 5 in 1 blade. and they’re expensive to replace.
Ahhhh. That’s good to know about the blade. I’ll just keep focusing on the fact that it cost me less than two grooming appointments. :) All this gear does add up so fast, but it pays for itself almost as quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #107 ·
Not gonna lie. Today was rough. I felt some tightly matted hair on Peggy’s elbow, so decided to tackle her legs. I figured it would be a quick and easy session, and that I could clean up some of my previous work. But I quickly discovered she had mats hidden all over. Even on her tail.

I brush Peggy regularly. I thought I was getting pretty good at it. I realize now that I’m still just brushing her superficially, which is probably actually tightening the mats at her roots.

I started off using the shortest metal guard on my Bravura, but when I realized the whole coat had to come off, I removed the guard and switched over to the blade’s 9 setting. Or at least I thought I was on the 9 setting. As I worked my way over her elbow and skin suddenly appeared, I realized I was actually on the shortest. Urrrrggghhh.

What started out as a pleasant experience for us both ended up being a marathon. Peggy went from lounging on the table, paws crossed, munching kibble, to hunching over, tail tucked tight, head hanging low. I gave her three breaks, but my shoulder and neck were screaming, and neither of us was happy.

The best part was probably “the car wash game” at the end, which is actually just me wiping her down with a towel to catch any loose hair. She thinks it’s the greatest.

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Now she looks an awful lot like the Velveteen Rabbit when his fur’s all rubbed off. I’m sorry, Peggy—not so much for the awful haircut, but for all those mats that were probably driving you bonkers. I hope you’re feeling better now. Thanks for being the most patient girl you could be.

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Yes, you look like a raw chicken breast in spots, but it’ll grow back and I’ll keep growing, too.

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I’m sorry it’s not what you wanted but she is so CUTE!
 

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Discussion Starter · #109 ·
I’m sorry it’s not what you wanted but she is so CUTE!
Thanks, @Starla. She’s definitely still cute. :)

And what a good girl:


At least we’ve come a long way with her home-grooming comfort level.
 

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I think she looks great in a retriever clip, and the bare spots will soon grow. It will be so much easier to brush and comb her, and get into the habit of combing right down to the skin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #113 ·
My spidey sense was tingling as I went into tonight’s nail clipping session, and maybe my anxiety was a self-fulfilling prophecy, because Peggy was stressed the whole time.

She actually yelped as I applied pressure on one of her nails. She’s never done that before. And then she pressed into me, frozen with terror.

I feel so bad and don’t even understand what happened. It was a white nail. I don’t think I was anywhere near the quick. How did I hurt her? There was a faint line in the nail, but no actual cut. Was I maybe going too slowly?

I went back and snipped the very tip, just to end on a good note, but my confidence is shaken. Peggy’s, too.
 

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Breathe. That's a scary feeling. It's possible you bruised the quick. You were wise to just clip the tip of the nail off, and quit. That way she doesn't learn that all she has to do is yell and you'll stop. But, still. So stressful! I understand where you are coming from. I finally got brave enough to get a nail clipper, but I prefer my Andis grinder. Cord/Cordless Nail Grinder It's almost, but not quite, silent. I just discovered I can take the top off and it works better without the guard. Turbo makes the whole procedure go faster. Noelle is never going to like having her nails done. I am never going to like doing her nails. But, this tool makes it more tolerable for both of us. Hugs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #115 ·
Breathe. That's a scary feeling. It's possible you bruised the quick. You were wise to just clip the tip of the nail off, and quit. That way she doesn't learn that all she has to do is yell and you'll stop. But, still. So stressful! I understand where you are coming from. I finally got brave enough to get a nail clipper, but I prefer my Andis grinder. Cord/Cordless Nail Grinder It's almost, but not quite, silent. I just discovered I can take the top off and it works better without the guard. Turbo makes the whole procedure go faster. Noelle is never going to like having her nails done. I am never going to like doing her nails. But, this tool makes it more tolerable for both of us. Hugs.
Thanks for your kind wisdom, @Click-N-Treat. I’ve looked at grinders a few times, but always felt a little intimidated. I’ll check out the Andis.

After tonight’s scare, I cobbled together a quick scratch board with some cardboard and sandpaper, then grabbed the clicker and a handful of treats. Within seconds, she’d figured it out, so tomorrow we’ll build a proper one. It won’t replace a nail clipper or grinder, but I’m hoping regular use will encourage the quicks to recede. Will be “interesting” teaching her to do her back nails, but they’re less pressing as she doesn’t really mind having them handled.
 

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I am always amazed at how skinny our poodles look striped down. You are doing a great job. Let us know how your nail scratching board works out. Think I might want to build one for Asta as of course he hates having his nails done - I hate doing them too. I will catch him at times chewing on his nails so it is time for a different approach.
 

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Discussion Starter · #117 ·
I am always amazed at how skinny our poodles look striped down. You are doing a great job. Let us know how your nail scratching board works out. Think I might want to build one for Asta as of course he hates having his nails done - I hate doing them too. I will catch him at times chewing on his nails so it is time for a different approach.
Isn’t it amazing? Peggy’s legs look like twigs! I was actually nervous watching her play last week. She looks so much more fragile than her dog buddies.

The scratch board is going great. I’ve incorporated it into our post-dinner training session and so far she loves it. Last night she even alternated between paws, which was a relief as she’d been more consistently offering up the right.

I started a thread: Scratch Board for Poodle Nails
 

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Discussion Starter · #118 ·
Today I used scissors on Peggy for the first time. They’re just basic scissors I bought for trimming my own hair, but they worked well for snipping off all the little “feathers” I left behind during our marathon shavedown. They were especially helpful for cleaning up around her feet.

Years ago, I gave Gracie a nasty gash on her elbow with scissors, so I cut very slowly and conservatively.

Peggy was worried at first, but I did some basics on the table (touch, paw, sit, that sort of thing) and she started taking treats again. After I gave her a break for a big drink of water, she was a little reluctant to hop back up. I shamelessly bribed her with her new favourite—freeze-dried rabbit—and suddenly she remembered she loves it up there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #119 ·
Today we had a wrestling match. Errr...I mean face grooming session.

She looks like she has a mask because I cannot—truly cannot—shave her muzzle beyond the halfway mark. Anywhere near her nose and she bucks like a bronco. So I focused on getting maybe a millimeter or two beyond her comfort zone, praised mightily, stuffed some cheese in her mouth, and moved on to scissoring her paws (which, thank the poodle gods, she tolerates fine).

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Maybe I just need to embrace our present limitations and let her grow a full donut.

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“Mmmm. Did somebody say donut??”
 

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What happens if you try with the Clippers turned off? With Annie I found that helped. Turn them off, do two swipes, then turn them on and do the same two swipes. Well, that plus a good grip on the chin.
 
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