Questions & Answers
Below are some of the most common questions we get asked about grooming your dog
Q. How often should my dog visit the groomer?
A. This really depends on the breed of dog and how much time you put into grooming at home. As a general rule most breeds should be washed and have their nails clipped at least every 12 weeks to keep the skin and coat healthy, but many breeds with longer coats should be seen more regularly to prevent matting and keep the coat in tip top condition. 4-8 weekly visits are recommended for longer coated and curly coated breeds such as Poodles, Doodles, Bichons and Spaniels.
Q. How old should my puppy be for his first groom?
A. If you start grooming your puppy from a young age, this will stand him in good stead for his adult years. When puppies are under 12 weeks old, they’re at the stage where they’re most tolerant and accepting of new and unusual situations. Therefore, if you expose your pup to a range of different grooming techniques in this time, it’s likely that he’ll never have a problem with being groomed. This will make things much simpler for you, especially if you have a large dog. After all, it’s much preferable to have a pooch who sit quietly while you brush him or hop into the bath on command than having a battle of wills every time you want him to get clean. It’s not only useful for grooming – if your puppy gets used to staying still to be touched and groomed, this translates well to other situations, for instance, when he needs to be examined by a veterinarian. Remember that there’s more to grooming than just brushing, you should also brush your puppy’s teeth, clean his ears out and bathe him occasionally. If your puppy comes to you later in life, this doesn’t mean that he won’t learn to accept a grooming regime; it may just require a little more time and patience.
Q. How much will it cost me?
A. Again this will depend on what breed of dog you have and how often you have your dog professionally groomed. Larger dogs with a lot of fur tend to be more time consuming and thus will cost more. Our standard grooming rate is for regular clients as the more often your pet is groomed the less work we have to do, owners that leave a longer time between appointments can expect to pay more. We recommend 4-8 weekly visits for dogs with long coats. Grooming your pet at home between your professional groom will help not only keep the price down but will make the dog’s grooming less stressful. Removing tough matting and tangles takes time and this can result in additional charges. Any prices quoted will be for dogs in good condition that are on a regular grooming schedule.
Q. I made an appointment but I can't make it now, is it ok to rearrange?
A. Yes of course, we understand that things change and sometimes it is unavoidable! We do however ask that customers give us a minimum of 48 hours notice for cancellations where possible; we work on an appointment only basis and cannot fill appointments that have been missed or cancelled at very short notice and our staff still has to be paid. Because of this we normally charge a cancellation fee of up to 50% of the full groom price if you cancel at short notice or miss an appointment.
Q. Should I still have my dog groomed in the winter or will it get cold?
A. Many people think that dogs only need haircuts when the weather is warm; however in the winter it is just as important to care for your dog’s coat and skin. Wet, muddy fur becomes matted far more easily and matted coats don't dry out properly causing dogs to get cold. Once a dog is matted sometimes the only option is to shave the coat off, leaving the dog needing a nice warm jumper! If your pet lives indoors and their coat is allowed to grow longer they may actually overheat when the heating is on. If your pet is allowed to get dirty and not washed regularly there also is an increased risk of skin infections. If you are worried about your dog getting cold when out on walks it is far kinder and more effective to get them a coat that can be removed once they are back in the warm. Imagine how uncomfortable it would be wearing your winter coat in the house and not being able to take it off!
Q. How long does it normally take?
A. Most dogs take between 1.5 and 2 hours for a full grooming session, however if your dog is particularly large or hairy it may take a little longer. Dogs that have not been groomed for a while may also take a bit longer.
Q. Do you include nail clipping and ear hair plucking when you groom?
A. We offer nail clipping and ear hair plucking as a complementary service within the groom. However, some dogs can become distressed when having their nails clipped and ear hair removed, we will not do anything to cause the dog distress or suffering and of course we also have to consider the safety of our groomers. If a dog is too distressed or aggressive we will not continue clipping nails or removing ear hair and recommend you seek assistance from your vet.
Q. Do you express Anal Glands?
A. This is a contentious issue. Many vets believe it is a procedure that should be conducted by qualified vets only. We will check the glands and if specifically requested by the owner we will check to see whether they can be easily expressed. If they do not express with light pressure or if there is any indication of infection we will not attempt to express and recommend that you contact your vet for advice.
Q. My dog gets really dirty and I don't think he can go the whole 8 weeks without a bath, is it ok to bath him at home?
A. Yes of course, so long as he is fully dried and brushed through after to prevent matts from forming. Alternatively you can bring your dog in between regular grooming appointments for a bath and tidy.
Q. I brush my dog regularly between grooms, so how come he always ends up with matts?
A. Most dogs are prone to matting up in certain areas, normally around collars and harnesses, under arms and around the paws. These areas are often more difficult to groom properly and require extra care when grooming. Using the right equipment is vital and often matting occurs when either the wrong type of equipment or the wrong technique is used. We can offer you advice on what to buy and how to use it properly.
Q. Do I wait with my dog or can I leave him with you?
A. Most people prefer to leave their pets with us and we will call to let you know when they are ready to go home, however we always give owners the option to stay if they think their pet would feel more comfortable. Most dogs are better behaved if their owner does not stay, however this is not always the case and sometimes dogs have special requirements or health complaints that require their owners to be present during the grooming process.
Q. How will I know when my dog is ready?
A. We will always telephone once your dog is ready to leave and encourage owners not to return before we call as this can excite or upset the dog and may result in us being unable to finish the groom. If you are worried about your dog or feel it is taking a long time just give us a call and we can let you know how they are doing and how much longer they will be. Please also collect your dog quickly as he will be eager to leave once his grooming is complete. We do not have the facilities to look after a dog for long following grooming so we would appreciate you collecting your dog within 15 minutes of our call.
Q. Should I walk my dog before or after his grooming session?
A. We always recommend that dogs are given a little walk before they arrive so that they can relieve themselves and expel any excess energy, however we do not recommend long walks for most dogs as this can cause your dog to be too tired to stand during his groom. Most dogs are tired after their salon treatments and appreciate a quiet and relaxed evening.
Q. What if I don't like my dog’s new haircut?
A. Just tell us, we really won't be offended. We keep detailed records and photographs of how each dog is styled for just this reason, but we can only change things if you let us know, and we always appreciate your feedback. Sometimes due to the condition of a dogs coat we have no choice but to perform a clip off or shorter style, however once we have done this we will be more than happy to show you how to groom your dog to prevent this happening again and hopefully will soon have your pet looking exactly the way you want.
Q. My dog sometimes acts a little strange after he has been to the groomers, why is this?
A. Grooming can be quite tiring as it requires the dog to stand up and concentrate for long periods of time, this means that some dogs are very sleepy after their groom, while others can be a hyper or cranky like children become if they are over tired. It is perfectly normal and your pet should be back to himself by the following day.
Q. My dog hates visiting the groomers, would it be better if I didn't take him so often?
A. Actually the opposite is normally the case. The more often a dog visits the more he gets used to it and eventually will accept the process better. Also if a dog is left too long then there will be more coat and more tangles which in turn will take longer and be more uncomfortable for the dog to tolerate. We recommend dogs that dislike grooming visit more often for in- between baths as well as regular grooms to keep things short and sweet.
Q. My bitch is in season, should I still bring her for a groom?
A. We recommend bitches in season are left until they have finished their season. This is normally 17 days after you first notice that she is in heat. This is due to bitches being more sensitive at this time.
Q. My dog has just been spayed/neutered, should I still bring it to be groomed?
A. We recommend that dogs are given time to recover fully before they are groomed. This is normally a little longer for girls, but on average at least 3 weeks after the operation. Always consult your vet if at all unsure.
Q. My dog had very sensitive skin, can it still be groomed?
A. Yes, we always take your dog’s health and condition into account, and we have special shampoos that are designed to help dogs with skin conditions. Please let us know when you call if your dog requires any special treatment.
If you have any questions that have not been dealt with here, please feel free to ask. Our aim is for your dog to enjoy his or her grooming with us and for you to be happy with our service.