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Ali
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Curious if anyone has any regrettable grooming tales, either your own or with a professional groomer. What's something you'll never do again? Anything you wish you did differently? What products do you regret using?
 

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Metrowest, MA
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Curious if anyone has any regrettable grooming tales, either your own or with a professional groomer. What's something you'll never do again? Anything you wish you did differently? What products do you regret using?
I've been a super control freak about my dogs with groomers since day one, and have NEVER left them with a groomer until Covid, and now only because the groomer is a personal friend that has been grooming them for quite a while, I know her well, the dogs are comfortable with her, and she knows EXACTLY what I want.. I have always stayed AT the groomers with my dog. IF the groomer isn't OK with that, I don't use that groomer. Period.

My only bad experience really wasn't totally the groomer's fault, though I now know, from my current groomer, that it could have been avoided. (she has shown me how to avoid it!!!) The old groomer was trimming Pixel's face, and Pixel went to lick her lips at JUST the wrong moment... The groomer ended up slicing off the edge of Pixel's tongue. It was's a big piece... just a tiny sliver. But mouths bleed... a LOT! It looked like a murder had happened in our kitchen!!! I don't even think it HURT Pixel that much, but it wouldn't stop. And of course, it was late in the afternoon.

I called our regular vet, and their surgeon was gone for the day, so we had to go to the ER vet. Even though it was a small wound, it needed stitches, and because it was in her mouth, she needed to be sedated for them to stick it. Because she was bleeding so much, they needed to intubate her so she wouldn't aspirate all the blood. So... I can't remember whether it was 3 or 5 stitches, but it wasn't many. And it ended up costing $800. :rolleyes:

The groomer's insurance covered it, but she was so freaked out that she refused to groom Pixel any more. Which I never really understood. I NEVER blamed her, but it really wasn't Pixel's fault. I was standing right there. Pixel wasn't being crazy. She was sitting perfectly still. She just happened to lick her lips at the wrong moment. (and as I said, I NOW know that if the gal had been more experienced, she would have known how to hold Pixel's face in such a way that she couldn't GET her tongue out without warning) But all's well that ends well... I am REALLY happy that I ended up with my friend grooming my dogs, and THAT wouldn't have happened if the other woman hadn't quit. I DO have to drive 50 minutes to the gal who does them now, but it's only every 7 weeks, so it's not that bad!
 

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Arf! Arf!
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When Ricky was about 1 y.o. we got frustrated with matting so we had him put in a puppy cut. We were not happy with the results and vowed never to do that again. Many people keep their Havanese in a permanent puppy cut for various reasons and that is okay, it just doesn't work for us. Everyone has different priorities and needs. and that's good. Today Ricky has a beautiful natural coat that is relatively easy to maintain.
 

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When Boo first came into my life, I got a recommendation for a very posh and sought after groomer. At that time, about 14 years ago, that groomer charged $80.00 for small dogs. Then, Boo's hair was long, in the traditional Havanese style. I booked a months worth of appointments (once a week) because the groomer was so popular. However, apparently, she never groomed a Havanese before Boo. I told her I wanted to try something shorter, but I still wanted him to look like a Havanese. Well, apparently, this groomer did not understand me because she shaved his body to nearly the skin, even though his coat was mat free. She chopped off his tail and fanned it. She also gave him a bobble head. When I saw him, I did not know what to say. I just paid the ridiculous grooming fee and left the place. Boo whimpered all the way home. I think he knew that he had a very bad haircut. The next day, I cancelled all the other appointments. Fortunately, a knitting friend whipped out three sweaters for Boo to hide the bad haircut. I think he wore sweaters for 6-8 weeks, whenever we went out.

Moral - All that glisters is not gold. The grooming salon was very upscale but the grooming not to my taste.
 

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Metrowest, MA
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When Boo first came into my life, I got a recommendation for a very posh and sought after groomer. At that time, about 14 years ago, that groomer charged $80.00 for small dogs. Then, Boo's hair was long, in the traditional Havanese style. I booked a months worth of appointments (once a week) because the groomer was so popular. However, apparently, she never groomed a Havanese before Boo. I told her I wanted to try something shorter, but I still wanted him to look like a Havanese. Well, apparently, this groomer did not understand me because she shaved his body to nearly the skin, even though his coat was mat free. She chopped off his tail and fanned it. She also gave him a bobble head. When I saw him, I did not know what to say. I just paid the ridiculous grooming fee and left the place. Boo whimpered all the way home. I think he knew that he had a very bad haircut. The next day, I cancelled all the other appointments. Fortunately, a knitting friend whipped out three sweaters for Boo to hide the bad haircut. I think he wore sweaters for 6-8 weeks, whenever we went out.

Moral - All that glisters is not gold. The grooming salon was very upscale but the grooming not to my taste.
Which is PART of the reason I NEVER have dropped my dogs off... I don't do well with surprises! If someone had done that to Kodi when he was in full coat I would have had a nervous break down! WHY did she think you would make WEEKLY appointments for THAT?!?!
 

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Which is PART of the reason I NEVER have dropped my dogs off... I don't do well with surprises! If someone had done that to Kodi when he was in full coat I would have had a nervous break down! WHY did she think you would make WEEKLY appointments for THAT?!?!
I have no idea what was up with that groomer. I don't think she had ever heard of Havanese, because the receptionist questioned me about the breed. I actually thought they believed I was happy after I saw Boo. I don't usually show my feelings. So, they didn't realize the horror I felt at the time. You know those celebrity groomers think they walk on water.

After that experience, I just used a groomer at Boo's daycare. He was a guy in his early 20s, but he did a terrific job and loved Boo. I was sad, when he left the country, due to a family emergency. However, about six or seven years ago, we found another groomer that we really like. She is a pro, and is very gentle with Boo. Now, that Boo is older, she blocks out extra time, so that he can have a break, when he needs it. She never rushes him.
 

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Many years ago I took Sparky to the groomers during the holidays. I wanted him to look cute for a Christmas picture. Later that day I went to pick him up. I was looking forward to seeing him all fluffed. I was shocked and speechless when the groomer brought him out. Poor Sparky was completely shaved down to his pink skin! I was so mad! I just payed and walked out never to return again. DH refused to walk him until I bought him a coat. :(
 

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Owned by a Havallon
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2,200 Posts
My major regrets...

#1 Allowing groomer to trim hair under the eyes.
This sets you up for constant upkeep. If not trimmed it will fall naturally to each side.

#2 Allowing groomer to pluck ear hair.
This was not needed on my dogs, especially an up ear yorkie who had little hair there anyway. Wound up at the vet’s office with 6-8 ticks inside the ear canals. The hair serves a purpose.

#3 Allowing groomer to shave around anus.
This did nothing but cause Mia to scoot for days afterwards.

#4 Not grooming Mia myself sooner.
This would have avoided 1-3 above. Glad I finally decided to do it. Less stress on me and the dogs, no need for vaccines just to be groomed and I have saved over 20,000 dollars.
 

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Owned by a Havallon
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Now I'm REALLY scared about finding a good local groomer. :oops:
Can you get a referral from someone in your area? The problems I had may have been resolved simply by me not being so ignorant. I knew NOTHING about grooming and trusted the groomer. I should have told her not to trim under the eyes, not to pluck ear hair and not to shave around anus. But I did not know enough. One thing I can say is if I can groom a dog anyone can. It is really not hard. In fact, it is very easy. But I know I was very fearful at first. I also wanted a groomer who did not require them to be updated on vaccines so that limited me.
 

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Now I'm REALLY scared about finding a good local groomer. :oops:
Don't feel scared. You just have to look around, and trust your gut. When I think about it, I really only had one bad encounter in hundreds of groomings, as Boo went every week for over a dozen years, until Covid started. So, really, that's not even 1% of his visits.
 

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Can you get a referral from someone in your area? The problems I had may have been resolved simply by me not being so ignorant. I knew NOTHING about grooming and trusted the groomer. I should have told her not to trim under the eyes, not to pluck ear hair and not to shave around anus. But I did not know enough. One thing I can say is if I can groom a dog anyone can. It is really not hard. In fact, it is very easy. But I know I was very fearful at first. I also wanted a groomer who did not require them to be updated on vaccines so that limited me.
I've asked around for recommendations and also posted separately on the HF asking for recommendations. Unfortunately, there don't appear to be many Havanese around my area so finding a groomer familiar with Havanese has proven difficult. I'm a bit clueless as a first-time dog owner about grooming and already nervous about basic grooming like cutting nails.
 

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Don't feel scared. You just have to look around, and trust your gut. When I think about it, I really only had one bad encounter in hundreds of groomings, as Boo went every week for over a dozen years, until Covid started. So, really, that's not even 1% of his visits.
Thanks, BoosDad. That makes me feel a little bit better. 🙂
 

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I’m conflicted about this. I wish I had relaxed about haircuts sooner and let someone else trim him more often. But if I had done that, I wouldn’t have learned and improved.

I really wanted to learn how to groom my Havanese myself. I’m picky, and I cut hair a million years ago so I have tools. I did schedule a few appointments because having a clean perimeter to follow makes it easier to learn. The biggest hurdle in learning to trim a Havanese with scissors is the sheer amount of time it takes, while also gradually training a puppy to tolerate grooming, without any puppy handling or grooming experience! I would have to do his ears one day, his legs another day. Once I finally started scheduling trims, I realized that even with all of the improvements I made, it takes so long that I wasn’t even getting that feeling of pride and satisfaction when I’m finally done! It’s worth it to have someone else do it, but I’m glad I can clean up his face if I want. The daily grooming is less pressure and more fun because I don’t feel guilty about dirty dishes or other responsibilities when we watch tv as a family- while I groom! Even though he’s down to 5-10 minutes, we usually stretch to get an episode out of it.

I made lots of mistakes along the way, though. And so did the groomers! After the first time I forgot too ask a groomer not to shave between the eyes, I thought I’d never forget again. Then I forgot with a new groomer last year!
 

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Metrowest, MA
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I have no idea what was up with that groomer. I don't think she had ever heard of Havanese, because the receptionist questioned me about the breed. I actually thought they believed I was happy after I saw Boo. I don't usually show my feelings. So, they didn't realize the horror I felt at the time. You know those celebrity groomers think they walk on water.

After that experience, I just used a groomer at Boo's daycare. He was a guy in his early 20s, but he did a terrific job and loved Boo. I was sad, when he left the country, due to a family emergency. However, about six or seven years ago, we found another groomer that we really like. She is a pro, and is very gentle with Boo. Now, that Boo is older, she blocks out extra time, so that he can have a break, when he needs it. She never rushes him.
That sounds perfect! I have a friend who is a groomer. She gets really attached to her “old man” dog clients. She has a couple of big old dogs that she does, and of course she has to put them in the tub to wash them (she has a ramp to walk them into it) but then after they are clean, even though it’s horrible for her back, she does tge rest of their grooming on the rubber floor of the salon, so they can be in any position that is comfortable for them rather than on the grooming table.❤
 
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My only bad experience really wasn't totally the groomer's fault, though I now know, from my current groomer, that it could have been avoided. (she has shown me how to avoid it!!!) The old groomer was trimming Pixel's face, and Pixel went to lick her lips at JUST the wrong moment... The groomer ended up slicing off the edge of Pixel's tongue. It was's a big piece... just a tiny sliver. But mouths bleed... a LOT! It looked like a murder had happened in our kitchen!!! I don't even think it HURT Pixel that much, but it wouldn't stop. And of course, it was late in the afternoon.
😭 Oh my goodness! Poor Pixel! I half covered my face reading that 🙊🙉🙈! Thankfully he was quickly taken care of but very scary. I always ‘groomed‘ (not being a professional I suppose I have to use the term lightly lol) and bathed my Daisy because she could be a bit nippy. While not my first preference it was nice bonding time and I really got to check her well all over. She LOVED it and would go nuts the second she‘d hear me taking out all the stuff!! Next go round I think I’d have to stick around with the groomer too hearing some of the stories here. I guess I think of it as advocating since clearly the pup can’t do it!
 

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My major regrets...

#1 Allowing groomer to trim hair under the eyes.
This sets you up for constant upkeep. If not trimmed it will fall naturally to each side.

#2 Allowing groomer to pluck ear hair.
This was not needed on my dogs, especially an up ear yorkie who had little hair there anyway. Wound up at the vet’s office with 6-8 ticks inside the ear canals. The hair serves a purpose.

#3 Allowing groomer to shave around anus.
This did nothing but cause Mia to scoot for days afterwards.

#4 Not grooming Mia myself sooner.
This would have avoided 1-3 above. Glad I finally decided to do it. Less stress on me and the dogs, no need for vaccines just to be groomed and I have saved over 20,000 dollars.
👏Great tips!
 

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Owned by a Havallon
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I've asked around for recommendations and also posted separately on the HF asking for recommendations. Unfortunately, there don't appear to be many Havanese around my area so finding a groomer familiar with Havanese has proven difficult. I'm a bit clueless as a first-time dog owner about grooming and already nervous about basic grooming like cutting nails.
It is always scary to learning something new. Just take baby steps and most importantly get your new baby used to grooming at a young age. You cannot depend on groomers only to do nails unless you take your dog really often. That is the number one mistake people make...not doing nails often enough. So you need to learn how to do that anyway unless your dog is groomed every two weeks or so. You will need to learn how to brush and comb. See video below for tips on that but I do not recommend a slicker. You can use this technique with a good pin brush. I use the CC brass fusion brush. I never use clippers on Mia. I do everything with a scissors. If I keep her in a long puppy cut she is a breeze to maintain. I am tempted to let her grow longer to see how that goes. I find the longer puppy cut easier and less work than the shorter cuts that need constant attention which I used to have her in. If you let the hair under the eyes alone, no need for trimming that and it will be easy to maintain.

 

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Ali
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109 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
My major regrets...

#1 Allowing groomer to trim hair under the eyes.
This sets you up for constant upkeep. If not trimmed it will fall naturally to each side.
These are great tips!!! Oooh I was so upset with Gooby's last grooming appt.. they cut around his eyes! I specifically told them not to cut him anywhere besides around his paws and a light sanitary trim. For 135$ mobile grooming, I expected them to actually listen to me or at least notify me before trimming an area..
 
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