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Discussion Starter #1
I'm new to dogs as Mango is my first dog. I have been bringing her to the same groomer for a year now(she is one year 3 months old). Little things have been bugging me about my dog's groomer and I'm not sure if they're things that are normal and I'm just being too sensitive as I have never been to another groomer before and am not too sure what I should expect.

1. Ever since the first day, when I pick Mango up, they have an appointment card with the next groom date. (4 weeks later). Is that normal? I find it a little presumptuous but it might be normal:S

2. I was told when I first called for pricing that I get 15% off when I'm on a 4-6 week schedule. I never asked for the discount, they offered it to me. Well yesterday, I go to pick Mango up and the app card is ready and I tell them I am busy that friday(august 24th) and would prefer a monday. So I told her the 27th would be better. The groomer tells me I would have to do it monday the 20th or I would lose my 15% off because I would no longer be on a 4 week schedule. I was a little shocked. Not only would the 20th make it 3 weeks but I was told I could do up to 6 weeks schedule and still get the 15%!

3. The first 4 months I went there, when I go to pay in cash, the groomer lets me know "we accept tips" with a huge fake smile. Umm, I can tell since there is a huge sign at the front desk boldly proclaiming that they accept tips.

Now these things have been annoying me BUT there is a reason I continue going: my dog looks fabulous, she always leaves and enters with her tail wagging wildly(granted I've yet to ever see her upset), and they act like they really love her. I've heard so many horror stories of dogs getting hurt at groomers and that's why I chose to go to this super high end grooming salon that is 15 dollars more than any other salon in the area. The money is not the issue. It's the attitude! Am I just being sensitive?
 

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We've used a number of groomers over the years and none of them have ever made the appointment on our behalf however they have asked if we'd like to make another appointment and we've decided the time frame.
Having a groomer that you trust with your dog is worth a lot but you have to decide how frequently you need to have Mango groomed, and whether or not 4-6 weeks is too often. If you only go every 8 or 10 weeks and don't get the discount the total cost will probably be less!
 

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I as a groomer, find it rude to basiclly tell some one they should tip. Sure tips are great, but tips are also earned IMO.

As for the 4-6 week rule. That is all up to you. And tell them that. But also remember that if you wait 6-8 she may need a shorter cut due to matts or such. this is me only assuiming you keep her in a longer cut, assuming I know the breed as most matt up quickly. I personally book a appt tentivaily for my grooms. Just because we book up so fast at our salon (we have almost a 3 week wait going on right now, and we have 5-8 groomers working every day 6 days a week). If my clients dont feel they want in that day, No problem. we re-book for their convience.

You too need to be happy with the groomer.
 

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Many busy, high end salons do give you another appt day and time when you pick up. Its supposed to be for your convenience, and theirs. Less phone calls to answer, and you dont have to wait 3 weeks to get in when you call. It is nice of them to offer a discount. I do not discount. I do find asking or even mentioning a tip, whether in signage or not, to be unprofessional and rude. However, signs are readily available from grooming suppliers to encourage tipping...I would never have one, nor do I mention tips, EVER, to a client. I would suggest you talk to them before making a decision to move on. Tell them you want X amount of weeks, and ask what the price will be. If after talking with them, and you are still unhappy, move on. I would suggest you dont burn that bridge tho, as you may want to come back in the future should you find that you arent happy with haircuts etc elsewhere.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you Tankstar and Graco. I didn't realize how common it was to give out appointment cards. I just took it as a little pushy but I guess it makes sense to save time.

Just to clarify, I am fine with a 4 week schedule. I just found it a little... stingy? for them to remove the 15% discount just because it was 3 days past 4 weeks. But I guess I did choose the salon without knowing about the discount and was fully prepared to pay for the full price. I keep getting a money hungry feel from the staff but I guess a business needs money to make a profit. Like I said, I take my dog's grooming seriously and money is not the issue here.

Would a groomer be angry/feel betrayed if one of their customers tries out a new groomer? I'd like to try out someone different at least once just to make sure I'm making the right decision in sticking with this salon and I feel I won't ever know if I don't try something new.
 

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Being given a date and card for the next groom may seem pushy. but like I said we have massive waits at out shop all the time, so we do it to save the customers. If they dont want that date, no problem. we can re-book. Or let them call at their leisure, but they know they may not get in when they call for sometimes up to a month.

If you are a loyal customer, which you sound like it to me. I dont get why they wouldnt give a little leeway with the discount once in a while. We have discounts given to dogs who come in every 4-6 weeks (shedless you pay once so as long as you come in every 4-6 weeks. If you go to 7 weeks and are loyal customer, we will not charge you for it. Same as hair cuts, come in every 4 weeks and you save 5-10 bucks per groom. if for some reason it goes to 5 weeks and you have been loyal, we will still cut you the break.

Yes a groomer may feel that way. But this is YOUR dog, do as you please. All groomers have different style. Try out another if you like, thats all up to you.
 

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I dont get offended when a client trys another place. They almost always come back with a bad haircut, vowing to never ever do it again. Lol Most of the people that try elsewhere is because they have to wait too long to get in with me, and didnt prebook. Some groomers may take offense, but I think thats ridiculous. A consumer has the right to do what they please. A different outlook on the discount...if its a 4 week discount, and they have people booking even a few days after that, then it can get out of hand. 4 weeks turns into 5, then 6 etc. With hundreds of clients, this can be a huge difference in their bottom line and in time it takes to complete the groom. I have many clients that can go 4 weeks between grooming matt free, but stretch it to 4.5-5 weeks, and it takes me an extra 10 minutes to demat areas. If that happens to 5 dogs in one day, I am 50 minutes behind...and possibly those dogs would be discounted too. ( Again, I dont discount tho). A busy salon with 4+ groomers can be doing 30+ dogs each day! Yes, grooming is a business, and we have families to provide for, bills to pay, taxes to pay,etc and I havent seen a non profit salon yet. ;-) Just because we love animals, and care for them daily doesnt mean its not a job we have to be paid for.
Maybe ask a friend or relative where they take their pet, how they like it etc and give someone else a try. You should feel completely comfortable with where you choose to have any service. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I think I will just have a talk with them. Maybe explain that I'd prefer they stop trying to upsell me nail polish and bows(I'll have to think of a way to do that tactfully) because, I forgot to mention, it's another thing I've been annoyed about and accept that they are just running a business and trying to make ends meet. Graco, I didn't even think about the extra dematting. Mango is brushed religiously but I guess not all dogs are and that would be annoying. But you guys have given me a lot to think of. Thank you!
 

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You are very welcome. Hopefully it will work out where you are. I can see how it gets annoying when every time you are in they are trying to upsell you with something. I hate that when I go somewhere once, much less every month asking again. Grr. :)
 
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