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I'm happy to announce we got through our first (mini) groom session this weekend.

My pup is 12 weeks. The breeder did his face and bum twice before we got him at 10 weeks old.

All things considered, it didn't go too bad. I had visions of him looking terrible but I'm quite pleased with our first attempt.

We have purchased a table, and for the time being, used a wahl bravura #10 setting.

Daily I've been touching his ears, tail, and paws. For nearly a week, I would place him on the table to brush him, and turn on the clippers to run along his body. He did have a few "flailing princess" moments, but I stayed calm and held him until he too calmed down. Lots of treats (kibble) and many breaks.

The paws.... that's going to be a challenge. Especially the front ones. He kept trying to climb me everytime I came close to his paw with the clippers. Any tips on how to make this go smoother?
 

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Well I struggle with feet too, so I can't help you there, but it sounds like you are doing the right kinds of things to make the grooming a good experience. In addition to pets to calm a wiggly dog you may want to consider having some very special treats that are only for during grooming. I have a tub of freeze dried chicken liver near my grooming table. On top of everything else if I offer the treat and the dog doesn't take it it tells me it is time to take a real break and take the dog off the table.
 

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Have faith....it'll get easier! I still hate doing feet after 5 years! Just be glad you are doing BIG feet and not the tiny ones that toys and minis have LOL!!!
 

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I wish I had pictures from many years ago when I adopted a little Aussie mix girl from the humane society! Other then the poodle nose your pup could be her carbon copy Very cute!



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I hate doing feet too and so does my dog. I like Catherine’s suggestion that if your dog is too stressed to take a special treat, then it’s time for a break.

I break the feet up. I only shave the top of each foot and give a treat after each foot. Then I shave the bottom giving treats after each foot. Then I do the nails. Then she gets down from the table for playing with a toy.
 

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So what I recommend beyond just playing with the feet, you take 5-10 minutes on non groom days and run the clippers near his feet and then on his feet. Don’t shave, just let the vibrations touch his feet. Obviously load him up with treats during this time.

One of the easiest ways to do feet is to do most of your shaving from the bottom of the pads. Getting in between and down by those toes from the top can be stressful as you’re learning; you can hit a lot of “real estate” from the bottom of the feet.

Good luck!


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good job! i still hate doing feet. when i do his feet, i have his head in the grooming noose. it cuts down on him wanting to climb on me for sure. and even with desensitization and training of course but i still do hate doing feet..:aetsch:

but at 12 weeks, he still has a ton of time to go with being comfortable with feet grooming, but you are checking all the boxes in terms of grooming.
 

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Well my guy goes to the groomer though I do have supplies...just haven't had the courage
I've never seen such coloring on a poodle, he is beautiful.
 

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Well my guy goes to the groomer though I do have supplies...just haven't had the courage
I've never seen such coloring on a poodle, he is beautiful.
 

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McAwesome, did they sell this puppy to you as a blue merle?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks everyone.

Special treats are a great idea lily cd re. I was just using kibble. I will up the ante.

Thanks AluePoodles for the suggestions. I will start running the clippers along his feet regularly to try to desensitize him to the clippers.

Eclipse, merle. Dad is a merle, and mom is blond in colour. I'm aware it's not a 100% poodle. He must have been mixed at some point. I think his colouring is very striking regardless. The pattern of some if his markings on his body/rear legs looks phantom to me. Admittedly, I dont know if the merle and phantom gene are related.... or if it's just a figment of my imagination. Guess I will have a better account of his colour when he gets his first full groom.
 

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McAwesome, you went way too high on the face! You're not supposed to clip above the eyes. But, I commend you for doing the face at all. I wasn't able to control my wild mustang first spoo as a puppy.
 

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Thanks everyone.

Special treats are a great idea lily cd re. I was just using kibble. I will up the ante.

Thanks AluePoodles for the suggestions. I will start running the clippers along his feet regularly to try to desensitize him to the clippers.

Eclipse, merle. Dad is a merle, and mom is blond in colour. I'm aware it's not a 100% poodle. He must have been mixed at some point. I think his colouring is very striking regardless. The pattern of some if his markings on his body/rear legs looks phantom to me. Admittedly, I dont know if the merle and phantom gene are related.... or if it's just a figment of my imagination. Guess I will have a better account of his colour when he gets his first full groom.


No, merle and phantom are not related in anyway. Merle has many variants, from the standard M/m to lengths of merle. Phantom is on the A locus along with sable.


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McAwesome, you went way too high on the face! You're not supposed to clip above the eyes. But, I commend you for doing the face at all. I wasn't able to control my wild mustang first spoo as a puppy.
Funny i hadn’t noticed. You clip the underlid, but you leave the hair on the upperlid.

Lots of people clip the upperlid too and it makes the dogs look really weird, almost scary. It doesn’t show on your puppy because I don’t think you clipped the hair on the eyelids at all.
 

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The paws.... that's going to be a challenge. Especially the front ones. He kept trying to climb me everytime I came close to his paw with the clippers. Any tips on how to make this go smoother?
Hi McAwsome! First, what is your puppy's name? He's sooo cute! Anyway, since he's only 12 weeks, I'll guess he has another vaccination due either soon or at 16 weeks. My pup Sachii is now 15 weeks, and last week I let the vet be the first one to do it. I'm not sure if it was his being a different place with strangers (vet & vet tech) that had him distracted, but he tolerated the nail clipping and shot like a pro. He watched her do it with interest but had no resistance whatsoever.

I've read here that the upside of taking a pup to a groomer is they are often more likely to be cooperative. I suppose this is like taking your kid to the pediatrician; kids generally they let a doc or nurse do what must be done whereas these same kids would have a full blown tantrum with their mom.

Well, good luck; I tried the nail clipping with my other poodle, Bella, and she was so awful that I ended up making a sling. She still hated it but at least I got the job done. Now I let it be the vet's problem, and it goes much better.

If you've never seen one, slings look like these below; the first video is hilarious.
Tip: do not elevate dog any higher than if the sling slips and the dog falls, it won't get injured.
Better Tip: enjoy the videos for your entertainment and try your best to avoid power struggles with your puppy, which takes us back to using a vet and future groomer as a resource.

Funny home made sling video:

What one of professional slings look like:
 

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The paws.... that's going to be a challenge. Especially the front ones. He kept trying to climb me everytime I came close to his paw with the clippers. Any tips on how to make this go smoother?
Hi McAwsome! First, what is your puppy's name? He's sooo cute! Anyway, since he's only 12 weeks, I'll guess he has another vaccination due either soon or at 16 weeks. My pup Sachii is now 15 weeks, and last week I let the vet be the first one to do it. I'm not sure if it was his being a different place with strangers (vet & vet tech) that had him distracted, but he tolerated the nail clipping and shot like a pro. He watched her do it with interest but had no resistance whatsoever.

I've read here that the upside of taking a pup to a groomer is they are often more likely to be cooperative. I suppose this is like taking your kid to the pediatrician; kids generally they let a doc or nurse do what must be done whereas these same kids would have a full blown tantrum with their mom.

Well, good luck; I tried the nail clipping with my other poodle, Bella, and she was so awful that I ended up making a sling. She still hated it but at least I got the job done. Now I let it be the vet's problem, and it goes much better.

If you've never seen one, slings look like these below; the first video is hilarious.
Tip: do not elevate dog any higher than if the sling slips and the dog falls, it won't get injured.
Better Tip: enjoy the videos for your entertainment and try your best to avoid power struggles with your puppy, which takes us back to using a vet and future groomer as a resource.

Funny home made sling video:

What one of professional slings look like:

Omg those videos are great!!! Thanks for the laughs.

This little bugger is already 20 lbs at 13 weeks. I'm thinking I'd need a mini crane to hoist him like that. I can only imagine my husbands look at I'm explaining the need for what looks like a baby dog swing. Lol

His name is Marley.
 

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