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Do a lot of people groom their spoos theirselves? I want to do mine when I get him, but my breeder warned away from using clippers when you don’t know what you’re doing. How did you learn how to groom your pup? How long do you wait to groom your puppy as I heard it can hurt their adult coat to shave before it gets curly. I want to learn how to groom my spoo but other than YouTube I’m not sure how else one would learn.


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I have not been brave enough to do a full groom on my pup but I am experimenting a little. I figure any mistakes I make can either be fixed by my groomer or it'll grow back :)

Anyway, my pup is professionally groomed monthly but trying to learn how to do it myself too. My groomer went on vacation at the beginning of the month, so instead of booking mid-Jan when she returned, I am waiting until my regular appointment at the beginning of Feb. Until then, I'm grooming Rocky myself.

The book I have is Poodle Clipping and Grooming The International Reference by Shirlee Kalstone.
 

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I learned from books "Dog Grooming for Dummies", a DVD that came with my clippers, internet grooming blogs, and You Tube. You do have to take care whilst grooming your pup, I usually keep sessions short, you can nick your puppy with clippers and scissors. I use blunt tip scissors.

No you won't hurt their adult coat by shaving the puppy coat. I have been home grooming 14 years now. Yeah there were some awful haircuts but it's just hair it will grow out. I have groomed a spoo, a mpoo and 7 tpoos, keeping everyone properly brushed/combed out is key as is regular bathing and properly drying that coat if you want to keep it long. Line brushing is important.
 

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The book I have is Poodle Clipping and Grooming The International Reference by Shirlee Kalstone.
Thanks SMSP, that's the other book I have.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have not been brave enough to do a full groom on my pup but I am experimenting a little. I figure any mistakes I make can either be fixed by my groomer or it'll grow back :)



Anyway, my pup is professionally groomed monthly but trying to learn how to do it myself too. My groomer went on vacation at the beginning of the month, so instead of booking mid-Jan when she returned, I am waiting until my regular appointment at the beginning of Feb. Until then, I'm grooming Rocky myself.



The book I have is Poodle Clipping and Grooming The International Reference by Shirlee Kalstone.


Do you keep your pup long? I’m wondering how often I will have to go to the groomers while I learn. Thank you I’m going to look up that book.


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I learned from books "Dog Grooming for Dummies", a DVD that came with my clippers, internet grooming blogs, and You Tube. You do have to take care whilst grooming your pup, I usually keep sessions short, you can nick your puppy with clippers and scissors. I use blunt tip scissors.

No you won't hurt their adult coat by shaving the puppy coat. I have been home grooming 14 years now. Yeah there were some awful haircuts but it's just hair it will grow out. I have groomed a spoo, a mpoo and 7 tpoos, keeping everyone properly brushed/combed out is key as is regular bathing and properly drying that coat if you want to keep it long. Line brushing is important.


I’m going to look at some books. I don’t plan on ever keeping it long, I like a shaved down look for easy keeping and simplicity. I’m making a list of what things grooming wise I’ll need to buy for my pup too.


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twyla

...you can nick your puppy with clippers and scissors. I use blunt tip scissors.
So far I've only used scissors to cut the very ends of hair that has grown out of place. I don't have the nerve yet to use clippers even though I have a full grooming kit.

But since I have a grooming reference book, I will eventually try a full groom.

It is encouraging to know that you home groom.
 

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twyla

It is encouraging to know that you home groom.
Thanks, It's funny I never even thought of doing anything else. I did read that grooming your poodle helps bond with them.
 

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Here are the things that novice groomers have the most difficulty doing successfully:

1) Feet. Clipping the underside of the feet requires teaching patience to both you and your dog. The biggest problem with the top is going too far up the leg. You only clip the foot - do not clip above the level of the toes or your dog will look as if it has high-water pants.

2) Tail. Leave hair on about 2/3 of the tail. This is a generalization - if the tail was docked too short you'll need to leave more. Only shave a little at first - then take a look at it to see if it looks OK - you can always clip a bit more. Tail hair does not grow very fast, so take it easy.

3) Head. Clip a straight line from the opening of the ear (NOT the top of the ear leather) to the corner of the eye. To set the lowest point of clipping on the neck, slide your hand down the neck with your thumb on one side and your forefinger on the other - you will come to a place where the neck fits into the shoulder - do not go any lower with your clippers.

Here is the most critical part of grooming the top of the head: scissor the front perpendicular to the muzzle - never, never slope back. I comb the topknot hair forward and scissor the front, then come it to each side and scissor the sides straight up from the cheeks - again do not slope toward the top of the head. Finally I round the back to match the roundness of the top of the neck.

I like Kalstone's book, too. I think that is the "bible" for grooming poodles.


One other thing - good scissors are essential. They should be long and sharp. Curved scissors make scissoring rounded areas easier, but are not absolutely essential. They are not cheap - mine were about $200. There have been some posts that recommended some less expensive scissors that are quite good. Good scissors should be very, very sharp and close smoothly with no effort. Have them sharpened professionally about once a year (assuming you are careful not to drop them, not to use them on anything but poodle hair, and not to use them on a dirty dog).
 

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Faint

Do you keep your pup long? I’m wondering how often I will have to go to the groomers while I learn. Thank you I’m going to look up that book.
Since it's winter, yes Rocky's cut is a bit long. The groomer did an Asian Teddy Bear cut.

Since Rocky is a pup and I want him to get used to the groomers, I take him monthly. To the best of my knowledge, it's recommended for poodles to be groomed every 4 - 6 weeks.

I try to comb and brush him almost daily...although it can be difficult to keep up. But since I missed the Jan professional grooming, I've become much more diligent in doing some degree of grooming almost every day.

Perhaps other members will have other opinions on the frequency.
 

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I groom my dog at home too.

I had a tpoo many years ago - long before the internet and YouTube. I borrowed the Kalstone book from the library and learned how to clip my tpoo - she never went to a professional groomer. I made mistakes early on, but it's only hair and mistakes grow out. We had that tpoo for 20 years and I groomed her with cheap clippers and cheap scissors - she had the typical tpoo coat which tends to be softer.

My current is a minipoo. When I brought her home she was almost a year old and had been a failed show prospect puppy - she grew too tall. She has an exceptionally gorgeous thick coat. I took her to the local PetSmart to the groomer my neighbor was very happy with - and sadly something happened which caused my dog to be petrified of grooming. I found another groomer who did a wonderful job that I was able to stay at the salon the whole time and help ease my dog over the fear - but there was all kinds of crazyness in that salon including they cancelled appointments.................. so I've been grooming her for over a year now. With my current minipoo she has such a thick coat I needed heavy duty clippers. Plus over the years they have developed wonderful cordless trimmers - I bought the Bravura for her face and sanitary trim and a miniArco to do her feet.

There's something wonderful about grooming yourself - you're in control and you can have all the fun of deciding what you want to do. People are constantly telling me my dog is beautifully groomed and asking me where I go. I love the look on their faces when I tell them I groom her myself and I'm self taught. I don't have any artistic skills or training in this area so if I can do it anyone can.

Now there are so many wonderful resources to buy professional quality equipment and detailed videos to help you groom. Plus help here on PF.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I groom my dog at home too.



I had a tpoo many years ago - long before the internet and YouTube. I borrowed the Kalstone book from the library and learned how to clip my tpoo - she never went to a professional groomer. I made mistakes early on, but it's only hair and mistakes grow out. We had that tpoo for 20 years and I groomed her with cheap clippers and cheap scissors - she had the typical tpoo coat which tends to be softer.



My current is a minipoo. When I brought her home she was almost a year old and had been a failed show prospect puppy - she grew too tall. She has an exceptionally gorgeous thick coat. I took her to the local PetSmart to the groomer my neighbor was very happy with - and sadly something happened which caused my dog to be petrified of grooming. I found another groomer who did a wonderful job that I was able to stay at the salon the whole time and help ease my dog over the fear - but there was all kinds of crazyness in that salon including they cancelled appointments.................. so I've been grooming her for over a year now. With my current minipoo she has such a thick coat I needed heavy duty clippers. Plus over the years they have developed wonderful cordless trimmers - I bought the Bravura for her face and sanitary trim and a miniArco to do her feet.



There's something wonderful about grooming yourself - you're in control and you can have all the fun of deciding what you want to do. People are constantly telling me my dog is beautifully groomed and asking me where I go. I love the look on their faces when I tell them I groom her myself and I'm self taught. I don't have any artistic skills or training in this area so if I can do it anyone can.



Now there are so many wonderful resources to buy professional quality equipment and detailed videos to help you groom. Plus help here on PF.


Thank you you guys are all really making me feel better about grooming, thankfully I have little to mess up too bad by wanting all one length other than face and sanitary shave.


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Completely self taught home groomer here. My breeder was totally the opposite of yours and was very enthusiastically confident that I would figure it out myself. I watched a gazillion YouTube videos, asked a million questions here and read as many threads as I could find on grooming. I bought the absolute best equipment (Bravura two sizes etc) and my breeder who is also a groomer was very good in setting the foundation for grooming in terms of behavior. I built up confidence step by step and had a professional groomer set his first groom - so the first challenge was only to maintain the lines she had created.
Louie has always looked unique since I like experimenting with different looks. He is very well trained to take to grooming and I am getting way more confidence as we move along. I think the biggest part of grooming is getting the dog to accept it - the rest is a haircut - which comes with watching and doing. And if you screw up it will always grow back!
 

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I am a self-taught amateur groomer. I learned by reading here and watching Youtube Videos (Sue Selco is really good).

I only had my dog done twice while I was learning. And I don’t have the perfect equipment. I have a good clipper but just okay scissors, no grooming table, or high speed dryer. Just the basic stuff. And it works for me.

My dogs are very good at letting me groom them. The parts I find difficult are the side of the thighs and the genital area.

You can do it for sure, anyone can. Just start as soon as you get your puppy, go slowly and be patient.
 

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Completely self taught home groomer here. My breeder was totally the opposite of yours and was very enthusiastically confident that I would figure it out myself. I watched a gazillion YouTube videos, asked a million questions here and read as many threads as I could find on grooming. I bought the absolute best equipment (Bravura two sizes etc) and my breeder who is also a groomer was very good in setting the foundation for grooming in terms of behavior. I built up confidence step by step and had a professional groomer set his first groom - so the first challenge was only to maintain the lines she had created.

Louie has always looked unique since I like experimenting with different looks. He is very well trained to take to grooming and I am getting way more confidence as we move along. I think the biggest part of grooming is getting the dog to accept it - the rest is a haircut - which comes with watching and doing. And if you screw up it will always grow back!


I am assuming it’s because she’s a small breeder and doesn’t groom herself which is fine not everyone is into it. I will probably get him used to groomers at first to lay a basis of being still.


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I am a self-taught amateur groomer. I learned by reading here and watching Youtube Videos (Sue Selco is really good).



I only had my dog done twice while I was learning. And I don’t have the perfect equipment. I have a good clipper but just okay scissors, no grooming table, or high speed dryer. Just the basic stuff. And it works for me.



My dogs are very good at letting me groom them. The parts I find difficult are the side of the thighs and the genital area.



You can do it for sure, anyone can. Just start as soon as you get your puppy, go slowly and be patient.


Thank you! I know I won’t have the top of the line equipment at first but I have found a cheap table on my wish list, and have no idea about clippers but know they run expensive!


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Another self taught home groomer here. Actually I just finished grooming Milo just now..lol

I actually don’t have a high speed pet dryer. But I have a blower that is used for electronics. Its super old but fantastic! Very minimal heat and does the job well. And because it has attachments, I especially love the nozzle because not only I use it for my laptop but I can use it to dry between his toes and it takes no time to dry. I bought scissors from amazon, nothing fancy but I use it mostly for his top knot and shaping his ears and tail. I have a bravura and I really like that I can use it cordless or corded. Not sure if this is enough for a standard. I have a bravmini for his paws but for a standard, i’d imagine a bravura will be fine. Smaller clippers have been a life saver when it comes to grooming small paws and face but won’t be an issue with a standard.

I have a grooming table with a grooming arm and worth every penny. I do all grooming on it, milo knows the drill and is excellent when it comes to grooming. On top of that, you need a pin brush and a steel comb. I also have a slicker brush and I find this is great when I want to fluff his feet prior to scissoring.

On top of all, I too recommend the kalstone book, a wealth of information.
 

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Thank you! I know I won’t have the top of the line equipment at first but I have found a cheap table on my wish list, and have no idea about clippers but know they run expensive!


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Lots of people go with the Wahl Arco or Bravura with 5-in-1 blade. It’s really easy and convenient becaue you don’t have to interchange blades, all you do is slide a button. If you have a little more money to spend, get the Bravura. If not, the Arco does the job, that’s what I have (unless your dog is a standard. I have toys so don’t know if the Arco is strong enough for a standard).
 

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The Wahl Bravura or Arco are often able to be found on sale (check PetEdge, DogShowStore.com and Cherrybrook for sales or promo codes).

I self groom my two spoos. Lily used to go out to be groomed and she learned how to be patient with the process there, but then a friend who is a groomer and has an mpoo showed me some essential basics along with helping me to select good shears.

Javelin's breeders are also excellent groomers and therefore he came to me with a very good start of being polite for the process and with well set lines. He has never been groomed by anyone other than me.

I can't say I do an excellent job, but I do okay and if I make a mistake, I just chalk it up to a learning experience and wait for it to grow out.
 
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