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Discussion Starter #1
A student looking for dogs to groom and I volunteered Beckie. She is 28 months old and she has only been done by me. She is very good at being groomed, she’s a very good girl when we go to the vet too. Everyone loves how nice she is, but she can be a little skittish in new situations.

I thought it would be a good thing for her to experience a different person grooming her, out of the house.

On the other hand, I’m afraid the student is going to hurt her, or that she’ll be scared and wonder what she is doing there without me. I thought I could watch, but I can’t, it would be too stressful for the student in training.

She needs to be groomed and I am not able to do it at the moment. Am I worried over nothing ? Should I cancel her appointment ?
 

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Only you know your dog. And I don't want to be a Debbie Downer. But.....one bad experience can undo years of training and confidence-building. I'm not sure I'd risk it.
I don’t want her to have a bad experience of course, but even if she did, I don’t think she would be difficult with me. I’ve trained her from the start and I think she would know better. This is not an issue for me, but the possible bad experience is.
 

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Can you ask if you could observe her doing another dog...see how she treats the dog, see how careful she is not to nick her skin etc. I've done that myself a time or two but my dogs know me and know it was not on purpose. They are none the worse for wear but it might be a different story with someone else if it's the first time for her. You could do that. And/or see if she can do a few very minimal things...not the whole groom...just to get everyone started and use to each other. Maybe bath, blow dry and brush. Maybe the body clip but not the shaved parts like feet, face, sani and toes. Do that when you can get to it later. In other words, I wouldn't throw out the idea automatically but tread gently at first...just a little grooming or whatever your dog can be okay with.

As for me...would I take my dogs to a student groomer? Maybe. I'd sort of like to ask some people how it all turned out for their dogs, maybe talk to the head groomer if this is a shop. See about watching through a window. The gal ought to be able to work under a little pressure. Just watch that her hands aren't shaking when she's got the scissors in her hands. lol. J/K. I don't know...I'm one of those neurotic people who doesn't want to board, leave anywhere, take to any groomer with the exception of when Matisse was showing. So don't listen to me.:lalala:
 
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I cancelled, I was too worried, but then she talked about herself and how she works and it really reassured me.

She has a lot of experience with dogs, she’s a pet behaviorist and she also does pet sitting for her clients. Her teacher, who has 10 years + experience, will be watching the whole time. She (student) has done clean faces on poodles before, she sent me pictures and they were okay. She says she has never cut a dog (let’s hope Beckie is not her first one, lol).

She works with positive reinforcement, and no restraints, in total respect of the dog. They don’t tie the dogs to groom, except if they wiggle too much, and they they use a harness.

She says if Beckie is too stressed, she will call me so I can come pick her up, and finish another day. Today she did a yorkie pup and his mom picked him up before he was finished because he had enough. She will finish him tomorrow.

She gave me her phone number if I wanted to talk in person. I was reassured, I didn’t feel the need to.

So I will bring her in saturday morning, 15 minutes before the appointment, so I can really explain what I want.
 

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Oh wow! I bet it will go just fine. She sounds like a gem. Good luck!
 

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Dechi, my initial instinct was to say not a chance! But after you described the situation, I agree with PB, it sounds pretty darn good. Also, the fact that you have trained Beckie to accept grooming will help her to feel more comfortable and will lessen chances of her moving quickly and getting accidentally nicked, imho.
 

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Dechi, my initial instinct was to say not a chance! But after you described the situation, I agree with PB, it sounds pretty darn good. Also, the fact that you have trained Beckie to accept grooming will help her to feel more comfortable and will lessen chances of her moving quickly and getting accidentally nicked, imho.
Thanks, I’m glad you and PB think it’s okay too. It’s comforting me in my decision. :)
 

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Sounds good to me, I would allow it. I like that she ends grooming if she sees the dog is getting stressed and would finish the next day.
 
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Well, she saw how anxious I was and didn’t want to take the chance of me cancelling on her at the last minute so she flushed me and gave the appointment to someone else.

Now I’m upset, I was really looking forward to it ! :-(
 

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That's too bad. Will you want to try again with her if she can get Beckie in?
 
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OMG! That was rude! You made the appointment. Period. She agreed. How disappointing. I'm sorry. Maybe this should be told to her superior if she has one. Does she get paid for these grooms, being a student? If so, I would just use a regular groomer. I know the groomers at the big box stores like Petco or Petsmart are hit and miss maybe, just like the trainers. But you can watch through the window. They're at least probably more experienced. You could ask for the most experienced groomer and see if she or he will work with you on Beckie, quit and come back to finish if need be etc. I'd just do that if you want Beckie to get use to another person grooming her.
 
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Sorry she filled the appointment slot!

Personally I could understand the fears of taking your dog to a student. It can be a big step for people. Shoot, taking Norman to a very experienced groomer terrified me!!

But with me being a bit more carefree with Norman's hair (now that I got him his first big boy haircut) I would let a student try to cut him! He is such a loving dog and I would want the student to get experience with a "good dog" who is only slightly wiggly :)
They have to start learning somewhere! Plus Norman needs the experience anyway. It may be hard for students to find people willing to give their dog over?? (especially if the dog owner wants precision and experienced hands). But that is where people like me come in LOL!

I hope you're able to book her again! I think it will be an awesome experience for Beckie! And make you a proud parent!!!
 

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OMG! That was rude! You made the appointment. Period. She agreed. How disappointing. I'm sorry. Maybe this should be told to her superior if she has one. Does she get paid for these grooms, being a student? If so, I would just use a regular groomer. I know the groomers at the big box stores like Petco or Petsmart are hit and miss maybe, just like the trainers. But you can watch through the window. They're at least probably more experienced. You could ask for the most experienced groomer and see if she or he will work with you on Beckie, quit and come back to finish if need be etc. I'd just do that if you want Beckie to get use to another person grooming her.
I can see her point. I cancelled once because Beckie had to go to the vet for her eye. Then I got scared and cancelled a second time, because I was afraid she would cut Beckie. But then she gave me all these arguments that convinced me and I said I was fine and would take her. I guess she thought I wasn’t trustable.

Her supervisor might even be the one who suggested to replace me for all I know. She might be evaluated or something and really needs the practice. I don’t think I have a case and even if I did, I wouldn’t do it because after I wouldn’t trust her with my dog.
 

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Well, she may have a point. But if I were in that business, I wouldn't do that regardless. I'd risk it...that you'd back out again because one lost appointment, one $50 or $60 or whatever the cost wouldn't be worth it to me to be intolerant. I'd try to convince the person that all should go just fine and if there's any indication the dog is uneasy or upset, we'd break it down into baby steps. I just couldn't be the one to back out. The customer is always right. (within reason, I guess) But that's not a good enough reason in my book. Maybe she should have been more adept at reassuring you. Oh well...you can find someone else.
 

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I'm sorry, Dechi! It's good that you can see where she's coming from, but by the same token, it would be nice if she understood your anxiety and gave you another chance. I don't like unforgiving people.
She gave me an appointment for next week, so I’m happy ! :)

I think she really thought I wasn’t going to come. Anyways, all is good now.
 
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