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Hello to all:

We just got back from the groomer with our 7.5 month-old standard. As her adult coat is coming in and it is getting warm out and she seemed uncomfortable, we opted for a "lamb" or "puppy" cut. We will miss the puppy fluff, but it seemed like the right thing to do in consultation with the groomer. I did not ask the price and just assumed that this would cost what her prior two groomings had cost. Instead, it was double the price: $150. I guess it must have been a lot more work. Olive is a pretty petite standard -- weighs only about 33 pounds, so I don't think it is her size. It could be that we live in Westchester, NY. Still, we were pretty surprised at the price. I should note that I do not begrudge the groomer her fee at all. She is obviously very skilled and Olive looks beautiful. It's just that I wonder how we will afford this as the groomer said that we would need to come back once a month. Has anyone here learned to do grooming on their own? (Not that I think I could necessarily do this, or that Olive would look anywhere near as pretty as she does now if I did!) Any advice from any groomers out there about a less expensive look? Does anyone know of any groomers in my area who might charge a bit less? Thanks for any advice. I realize that I may sound ignorant to you experienced poodle owners on the forum. Olive is my first poodle, and I could use some guidance. Thanks!

Alice
 

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How long was this appointment vs. her previous appointments?

Our groomer charged less, but we live a rural area. Honestly, I wondered sometimes how she paid her bills! We tipped generously.

That (fantastic) groomer is on medical leave now, so I’ve been doing Peggy myself. She looks awful. Lol. But you could definitely do some maintenance yourself, to stretch out the time between appointments. Part of that might be having Olive clipped shorter by the groomer, and be prepared to spend a not insignificant amount on supplies to get you started.

With a short clip, you could also just have a professional “FFT” (face, feet, and tail) done monthly to keep her clean, neat, and comfortable, and brush her out and clip her nails yourself in between. Then do a full appointment every once in a while to get her coat back down to manageable.
 

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Hello to all:

We just got back from the groomer with our 7.5 month-old standard. As her adult coat is coming in and it is getting warm out and she seemed uncomfortable, we opted for a "lamb" or "puppy" cut. We will miss the puppy fluff, but it seemed like the right thing to do in consultation with the groomer. I did not ask the price and just assumed that this would cost what her prior two groomings had cost. Instead, it was double the price: $150. I guess it must have been a lot more work. Olive is a pretty petite standard -- weighs only about 33 pounds, so I don't think it is her size. It could be that we live in Westchester, NY. Still, we were pretty surprised at the price. I should note that I do not begrudge the groomer her fee at all. She is obviously very skilled and Olive looks beautiful. It's just that I wonder how we will afford this as the groomer said that we would need to come back once a month. Has anyone here learned to do grooming on their own? (Not that I think I could necessarily do this, or that Olive would look anywhere near as pretty as she does now if I did!) Any advice from any groomers out there about a less expensive look? Does anyone know of any groomers in my area who might charge a bit less? Thanks for any advice. I realize that I may sound ignorant to you experienced poodle owners on the forum. Olive is my first poodle, and I could use some guidance. Thanks!

Alice
I used to be a groomer so this may be true for your groomer- I would have charged much more for setting the pattern + scissor fees but charged the “regular” price for maintenance baths and/or if you brought the dog in religiously every 4-6 weeks for full grooming. I would ask the groomer if they do this and just let them know that you think the price is fair but that you will have a hard time with it. Im sure they don’t want to lose a client or have you come in less.
 

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We pay around 120.00 plus a generous tip. It is expensive but every single cent is well earned and worth it. We love our groomer. We bring Bobby in every 4 to 6 weeks without fail. The joke at my house is our grooming expenses go to Bobby as I cut my own hair and my husband’s and don’t
dye it. 😉 Humor aside, I’m guessing it really varies by location. If you need to get the price down, I would, as Phaz23 said, talk to your groomer. Our groomer charges for some things separately, clean feet has a charge, nail clipping has a charge, ear cleaning has a charge and so on. I’ve learned to dremmel Bobby’s nails and I’m hoping to learn how to shave his face. Maybe if you learn to do some things you can bring the cost down a bit. I’m hoping I can do things well enough that I can bring Bobby in only every couple of months. Also, I definitely remember our groomer making sure we knew it would be more expensive as Bobby grew into an adult. The puppy grooms were significantly less expensive.
 

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If you have the patience you can totally do it yourself . I’ve never taken Sandy to the groomers (she is 9yrs) and slowly bought nice grooming Shears/dryer/clippers/table/dremel. Watch a lot of YouTube videos and safety grooming tips. Never leave tools on the table with your dog and never leave your dog on a grooming noose and walk away .

Also you can find a groomer to help. There is a master groomer in Jacksonville fl that does lessons every once in awhile so you could possibly find someone that doesn’t mind teach basics .

The nice thing about doing it yourself is you don’t have to get everything done in a time limit or even the same day and you can always have a nicely groomed dog instead of waiting 4-6 weeks to do it again.

It isn’t for everyone but I actually enjoy grooming my own dogs. They aren’t perfect 🤷🏻‍♀️😊.
 

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Yes, quite a few of us on here have learned to groom our own dogs (many like me needed to when groomers were shut down or hard to access). I love making up my own versions and mashups of grooming styles!
I've never actually had Raffi at a groomer, and I know that different people mean different things with the terms, but doesn't a lamb cut usually have a lot of hand scissoring? That tends to be more expensive from what I hear.
You could ask if there is a clip that needs less maintenance, or more clippering/less scissoring. Usually a 'kennel clip' is even shorter than a lamb cut, or a Miami has the ankle puffs but can be quite a short body.C
 

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Normie has what's called a 'retriever' clip - short all over. It's great for warmer weather or dogs like Normie who refuse to stay neat and clean. It's low maintenance and probably simpler to cut.

Every 6 weeks, I pay a mobile groomer about $125 (includes tip) for an 18-pound poodle.
There are less expensive groomers here, but I like that he never has to wait in a strange place.
 

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Happy has yet to see the I side of a groomer's shop. I live in a high cost area so I assume I'd pay $120+. I spent about $800 on grooming tools but I think I've more than made up for the cost by doing everything myself. Lots of PF members are doing their own grooming. Not only will doing it yourself save you big bucks, you'll appreciate it even more when someone complements your beautiful dog.

Please post a pick of your pup.
 

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I groom my dog and learned just by watching lots and lots of YouTube videos. It is definitely possible but is much harder than you would think. Difficulty depends on the dog's behavior. Startup costs were $500ish but I've since spent quite a bit more so probably more like $1000 in two years. Less than I'd pay at the groomer for sure but still a lot. Learning the fancy scissored styles takes a long time so you want to start out with the easy ones that are almost all clipper work.

You may want to consider getting a trimmer like a bravura and learning to do feet, face, and sanitary. That really helps to lengthen time between grooms.

Photo from today after a feet, face, and sanitary trim.

PSX_20210414_222039.jpg
 

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I'm just about to get my poodle. I checked with a groomer in CT and prices start at $115.
Here's what she had to say. Note this groomer was recommend by a long time SPOO owner, and is a Poodle owner herself.

"I always recommend grooming for a poodle every 4-6 weeks, nails should be maintained monthly.
A grooming session at Valley Dog includes brushing, bathing, conditioning, anal glands, ear cleaning, ear hair removal, teeth brushing, nails clipped and filed, breed specific styling, including clipping and hand scissor finish.
Standard poodle trim pricing starts at $115.00 and up depending on style and size. Young puppy price is reduced according to size.
We offer a quick puppy's first visit. We trim nails, clean ears, brush and pet your puppy. There is no charge for this appointment and it takes about 5-10 minutes.
Look forward to hearing from you."

THAT IS A LOT OF WORK for $115! I think it's very reasonable.
I plan to do nails, brushing, and bathing (& drying) to get closer to the 6+ week schedule.
 

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(pssst, just checking that you're up to speed on whether anal glands need to be expressed (not necessarily), and ear hair removed (not necessarily).
I've heard not (necessarily) to pluck the ear hair, but I know nothing about the anal gland and their care. Do they always need expressing, or do they check and do it if needed? I will ask them about it. Please feel free to educate my ignorance as well!
 

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Has anyone here learned to do grooming on their own?
Oh yes, many of us sure have lol! Lockdowns made it necessary and a lot of us still do our own, with varying degrees of skill and poodle cooperation.

You can search this forum for threads starting around a year ago and find a lot of the info on what you need to do it, specific groomers to look for on youtube, and so on.

You might also ask the groomer if it will change their pricing if you do the bath yourself, or if you do the FFT and nails yourself. Mine are mpoos and I find that I like doing the grooming, although my skill level hasn't improved much :(.

You can stretch the time in between by a week or so by having your spoo clipped fairly close in warmer weather and doing those touch ups yourself. I used to let my girls grow out two months or so between visits but did keep their bits tidy. With my boys now I'm trimming something every bath day lol.

I keep my boys very basic.

475749
 

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Do they always need expressing, or do they check and do it if needed?
It's something like "if it ain't broke..." for both. I'd actually prefer that my vet assess the need and do it. This is because some groomers are skilled and are not likely to cause additional issues, but all vets or their techs should be skilled.

Some dogs don't need to have the glands expressed because the planets have aligned. Firm stools to help naturally empty them by the pressure of the stool moving out, the glands healthy and in the right place, and some other factors make manual expression unnecessary. I know there's threads here on this but this'll do for the overview.
How to Tell If Your Dog Needs His Anal Glands ExpressedCherished Companions Animal Clinic (ccanimalclinic.com)

Plucking ear hair as a must do process is lately under debate. There's threads on that topic too.
 

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It's something like "if it ain't broke..." for both. I'd actually prefer that my vet assess the need and do it. This is because some groomers are skilled and are not likely to cause additional issues, but all vets or their techs should be skilled.

Some dogs don't need to have the glands expressed because the planets have aligned. Firm stools to help naturally empty them by the pressure of the stool moving out, the glands healthy and in the right place, and some other factors make manual expression unnecessary. I know there's threads here on this but this'll do for the overview.
How to Tell If Your Dog Needs His Anal Glands ExpressedCherished Companions Animal Clinic (ccanimalclinic.com)

Plucking ear hair as a must do process is lately under debate. There's threads on that topic too.
Thank you Rose.
 

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Here is how I approached grooming. I committed to taking my puppy (first poodle puppy) to the groomer for a year with shaved face/feet and whatever other groom I wanted. My goal was puppy socialization to groomers and all the activities of grooming. Then my plan was to switch to doing it myself.

I got many of the grooming items I needed (clippers, scissors, nail dremel, combs, brushes, table, grooming loop) and in between grooms I tried to keep face, feet, and sanitary areas clipped, nails done, and do regular combing. My groomer was busy training my dog to accept normal poodle maintenance, and also would give me kindly advice about how I could do better. I learned a LOT just from regularly being handed a puppy that was properly groomed. I would go over her afterwards at home and learned about curve angles, set lines for grooms, how to leave a crest, my tail preferences. I made mistakes, and I got better. I still have a LONG way to go, lol. My dog is not particularly easy to groom but is settling more and more. I think she would have been a holy terror without all this training.

Like others have mentioned I watched a lot of YouTube videos, followed groomers on social media, and looked at a lot of groom photos, and read/reread this book:

It is much easier to do home grooming if you are okay with simple kennel clips, it is when you want to get fancy that it gets harder. The two things I continue to struggle with today (Violet is 18 months) are face shaving and blowing the hair straight. Unfortunately, these are both pretty basic to poodle grooming. I don't let that stop me. You can get a long ways by just not giving up.

One last piece of advice: spend at least a year shaving your poodle's face. They need to learn to accept clipping on their face for safety, sanitation, and health.
 

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Hello to all:

We just got back from the groomer with our 7.5 month-old standard. As her adult coat is coming in and it is getting warm out and she seemed uncomfortable, we opted for a "lamb" or "puppy" cut. We will miss the puppy fluff, but it seemed like the right thing to do in consultation with the groomer. I did not ask the price and just assumed that this would cost what her prior two groomings had cost. Instead, it was double the price: $150. I guess it must have been a lot more work. Olive is a pretty petite standard -- weighs only about 33 pounds, so I don't think it is her size. It could be that we live in Westchester, NY. Still, we were pretty surprised at the price. I should note that I do not begrudge the groomer her fee at all. She is obviously very skilled and Olive looks beautiful. It's just that I wonder how we will afford this as the groomer said that we would need to come back once a month. Has anyone here learned to do grooming on their own? (Not that I think I could necessarily do this, or that Olive would look anywhere near as pretty as she does now if I did!) Any advice from any groomers out there about a less expensive look? Does anyone know of any groomers in my area who might charge a bit less? Thanks for any advice. I realize that I may sound ignorant to you experienced poodle owners on the forum. Olive is my first poodle, and I could use some guidance. Thanks!

Alice
I always paid $60. plus a $10 tip so $70. standing 4 weeks appointment. Now I just clips him down myself, not as pretty but saves me $$$ and time in the long run.
 

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It's something like "if it ain't broke..." for both. I'd actually prefer that my vet assess the need and do it. This is because some groomers are skilled and are not likely to cause additional issues, but all vets or their techs should be skilled.

Some dogs don't need to have the glands expressed because the planets have aligned. Firm stools to help naturally empty them by the pressure of the stool moving out, the glands healthy and in the right place, and some other factors make manual expression unnecessary. I know there's threads here on this but this'll do for the overview.
How to Tell If Your Dog Needs His Anal Glands ExpressedCherished Companions Animal Clinic (ccanimalclinic.com)

Plucking ear hair as a must do process is lately under debate. There's threads on that topic too.
Our groomer plucks Bobby’s ears as he truly must have it done. I asked her how she handles anal glands and she said she never does it as she feels vets are better qualified and that too much anal gland expressing can actually cause issues. We leave expressing to our vet.
 

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I have two toys and have learned to groom them myself. I don‘t think it’s hard at all. It won’t be as nice as a professional would do, but what’s important is the dog be comfortable. Let’s not forget grooming is primarily about dog comfort.

All you need is a clipper (200$), a comb, a brush and cissors. I’m still using sewing scissors, lol ! Just get a good quality clipper.

Do they always need expressing, or do they check and do it if needed?
If you express the glands on a dog who doesn’t need it, the glands will become « lazy » and you’ll be stuck having to do them for the rest of the dog’s life. I‘ve had more than 20 dogs in my life and only one needed regular gland care : Beckie. The rest of them never had it for their whole life. For Beckie it’s a pain in the b... (pun intended) because she needs it sometimes twice a month.

So make sure to specifically tell the groomer to not touch the glands on your dog. Here in Quebec groomers aren’t even allowed to do it anymore.
 
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