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I haven't had time since moving to find a new groomer so I've been taking care of it myself (poorly, I'm sure, although the tips I've picked up here have helped :)). My question for groomers: I have a fearful dog who takes a while to warm up to new places and people. It's difficult even getting her to enter a new building if it has glass doors, which 100% of the grooming shops I've checked out have.

So knowing she's a handful, would you agree to the following:

- Allow me to come to your shop as many times as it takes to first get her going into and out of the building without fear and then hanging out inside calmly. I wouldn't want to disrupt your business but on the other hand, I have to take this slowly since I don't want to flood my dog and create a bad association before we've even made it through the door.

-Spend time getting to know her, play with her, walk her. Basically getting her to trust you before you try any grooming. Maybe she visits you 4-6 times and you spend an hour with her each time. Then you start working up to just brushing, then brushing + bathing, then add ear clean, then nail trim. I would pay for a full groom each time, whether she walks out of there groomed or not. And I'd be willing to do it daily if I have to for however long it takes for her to get comfortable. Bathing would be no more than monthly, though.

- Here's the hard one: I would like to drop my dog off, have her worked on, and then I would like to pick her up as soon as she's done. I don't want her sitting around in a cage - she had a bad experience when she was a pup, which I think is part of the reason she hates glass doors and grooming by strangers in general (she's ok with me).

WDYT? Does this sound totally whacko? Any other suggestions? My goal is to have her going to a professional groomer once a month again, but I have to get over this big fear obstacle and don't know how to do it without enlisting the groomer's help with a serious course of desensitization. She learned to like her groomer at the last place we used, but that was because it was also her daycare and the groomer took the time to get to know her, play with her, etc. before he tried to groom her. And it was a place she was already comfortable.

Thanks for your input. I just want my girl to look this pretty again!


 

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I wouldnt have a problem with any of the things you mentioned. In fact that is whati tell people to do with dogs like yours. U should call orstop by the salons and explain all that to them. U will be able to tell real quick which groomers will be right. Have u called the daycares and boarding facilities in ur area. Usually they have a groomer and waybe your dog will like that setting more. Thats where i groom now, and most of the dogs are better when not in a salon setting
 

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It's good to know there are groomers out there who will help deal with this - thanks. I agree on the daycare, although I have to be careful about which one she goes to. They have to know how to deal with a fearful dog, only use positive methods, have a large yard with a high enough wall that my girl can't jump it (that is still under debate!), be cage free, have the right staff to dog ratio, blah, blah. We've tried enough of them to know how to spot a good one. Unfortunately, the only good one around here is one that doesn't offer grooming. So I'm searching for a groomer who will really listen (when they dismiss my concerns and patronize me as if I know less than a rock about dogs, I walk out!).
 

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Of course if you are willing to pay for the time, I would be more than happy to help get your dog acclimated to me and the grooming.

I would have you come in first thing in the morning, or at the end of the day, and block out an hour for Poca-playtime. Make some calls and see who has the time and patience to work with her. Not every groomer will be willing to do it. But I know there must be some.

She reminds me so much of my Jiggy (see sig, when jiggy isn't shaved...and their ears are different)

I wonder why it seems most dogs that look like ours are kind of skittish with these types of things? Jiggs is a wreck when she needs a vet visit. And every dog I groom that looks like Poca and Jiggs are always a "go slow" type of dog....
 

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Thanks, GG. I was hoping you would say that about being willing. My vet has recommended a groomer to us I think I'll try. She and her husband have worked in rescue for years, so I think she should be used to dealing with fearful dogs. And they make appts for grooming vs. having the dogs there all day, which would be a big help for us. I like your suggestion for doing it early or late in the day, too. I just wasn't sure if this would sound like a really unreasonable situation to ask someone to deal with. But, don't ask, don't get, right? :)

Interesting about Jiggy. Wonder if it's genetic - seems to be with Poca. Or at least I think she was predisposed to be skittish and we must have done something when she was young to enhance it. Don't know. We just take each situation as it comes and deal with it. The vet thing kind of makes me mad. She used to be fine at the vet - she would act like she was going to daycare, which she loves. Then the vet hit a nerve while giving her a shot and that was the end of the good times at the vet. :( Oh well. If it hadn't been for the shot, something else probably would have set her off at some point. We love her though, although I would like there to be a little less dirt and doggy smell in the equation!
 

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Aww, poor Poca.

I do hope it works out for you and that Poca can someday really enjoy to be groomed. Some dogs just never like it - but learn to tolerate it. Others actually can get into it and realize it can feel good....(massage in the bath....the blow dryer also can feel like a massage if they relax, I've had a co worker use it on my back before - it feels great!)

I'll be interested to see how it turns out.
 

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I haven't had time since moving to find a new groomer so I've been taking care of it myself (poorly, I'm sure, although the tips I've picked up here have helped :)). My question for groomers: I have a fearful dog who takes a while to warm up to new places and people. It's difficult even getting her to enter a new building if it has glass doors, which 100% of the grooming shops I've checked out have.

So knowing she's a handful, would you agree to the following:

- Allow me to come to your shop as many times as it takes to first get her going into and out of the building without fear and then hanging out inside calmly. I wouldn't want to disrupt your business but on the other hand, I have to take this slowly since I don't want to flood my dog and create a bad association before we've even made it through the door.

-Spend time getting to know her, play with her, walk her. Basically getting her to trust you before you try any grooming. Maybe she visits you 4-6 times and you spend an hour with her each time. Then you start working up to just brushing, then brushing + bathing, then add ear clean, then nail trim. I would pay for a full groom each time, whether she walks out of there groomed or not. And I'd be willing to do it daily if I have to for however long it takes for her to get comfortable. Bathing would be no more than monthly, though.

- Here's the hard one: I would like to drop my dog off, have her worked on, and then I would like to pick her up as soon as she's done. I don't want her sitting around in a cage - she had a bad experience when she was a pup, which I think is part of the reason she hates glass doors and grooming by strangers in general (she's ok with me).

WDYT? Does this sound totally whacko? Any other suggestions? My goal is to have her going to a professional groomer once a month again, but I have to get over this big fear obstacle and don't know how to do it without enlisting the groomer's help with a serious course of desensitization. She learned to like her groomer at the last place we used, but that was because it was also her daycare and the groomer took the time to get to know her, play with her, etc. before he tried to groom her. And it was a place she was already comfortable.

Thanks for your input. I just want my girl to look this pretty again!

Hi, I lurk here :) I've had people who come in to either sensitize or desensitize their dogs to the grooming area. What has helped some is having the owner bring the dog in, have a seat and we chat--not only do I get a feel for what they're wanting done as far as grooming goes, but the dog can "not be the center of attention" and hear, smell and see the things of the grooming room and get braver at their own pace. I wouldn't make a big deal of "making" your dog meet the groomer right off the bat, letting them move at their own pace can do wonders if the patience is there. If you wanted the groomer to walk your dog, or spend extra time with her, there might be a nominal charge but it sounds like that wouldn't be an issue for you.
I hope I'm not too late replying to this thread.
Jenny
 
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