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Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #1 
After having read the article regarding "clean up our industry" I got to thinking. I wrote a letter in response to that article and thought I gave some good incite and ideas. One of my ideas was to offer groomer training in the local community colleges. This would lend credence to the grooming profession and add confidence to our groomers and clients. Not to mention job opportunities for simi retired groomers. Since community colleges wouldn't allow real dogs due to the potential for "messes" and law suits, I proposed that they use the new "fake dog" while training students to groom. I realized that the dog is about $100 dollars and really needs to be used to death to earn its worthiness.

It really stuck in my cheap brain about how much it would cost to use fake dogs to groom in each training session. So while my fingers were grooming customers dogs, my hamster was burning rubber in it's little mental wheel. Finially, I had to stop grooming and go out into the retail area and stare at my poodle hair cuts poster.

I got to thinking, what if you only used half the dog at any given time. Save the other side of the dog for later. Then you could practice different cuts in a frugal order.
How about:
Bichon clip on the first grooming day? That leaves tons of hair, but allows some practice triming the feet, face and body. Then,
Poodle Puppy clip on the second day? That takes the face and feet and tail area. Then,
Poodle Royal Dutch clip on the third day? That would teach you that style and could be followed by the
Poodle Town and Country clip on the forth day, which would remove even more hair. Then the
Poodle Bikini or Summer clip would finish off all but the balls on the dogs ankles. On the sixth day of class the students could do a
Poodle Strip. Thus using the fake dog for 6 different classes.

I figure that the normal community college class meets 3 nights per week. If you consider that alot of classes will involve test time, lecture time, field trips and instructor demonstration time, not all 3 nights per week will be able to squeeze in grooming time. But even if you only actually groom 1 night per week, I can't figure out how to make that dog last more than 12 weeks tops. Not to mention, I have yet to figure what type hair styles to do on the second side of the dog. Any ideas on how to make that dog last for a normal college semester? Or what order of cuts to perform on the second side of the dog?

Teresa Ann Hewitt

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Posts: 1,943
Reply with quote  #2 

Originally Posted by BubblesandBubbles
One of my ideas was to offer groomer training in the local community colleges. This would lend credence to the grooming profession and add confidence to our groomers and clients. Not to mention job opportunities for simi retired groomers. Since community colleges wouldn't allow real dogs due to the potential for "messes" and law suits, I proposed that they use the new "fake dog" while training students to groom.

Actually our local community college does use real dogs for students to work on.  Greenville Technical College in Greenville, SC has a pet grooming course that offers the voluntary certification you are talking about.  Upon passing their existing course, one earns a certificate stating they have done so.  This, of course, differs from the certification offered by grooming organizations such as the NDGAA, IPG, ISCC, and more recently the NCGIA (sorry if I'm forgetting any others) that carries an official title of one sort or another.  These certifications are also completely voluntary. 

I am not a dog groomer (only groom cats) but I am having a very hard time seeing how one could truly learn the art of dealing with so many different coat types, conditions, temperaments, sizes, etc, etc simply by working on a non-living, uniform fake dog.  If we were talking about using fake cats to learn how to properly groom living cats later on, this would never work.  There would be no handling skills of ANY kind involved in grooming a fake one.  There would be no real understanding of the anatomy as the legs do not bend, the tail does not swish, the ears do not move, etc.  A novice groomer would not be able to learn the skill of determining what needed to be done with a particularly matted coat or one filled with burrs or fleas or some other form of debris.  One would never learn how to determine which products to use on which coat types or skin conditions. 

These are but a few of the problems I can forsee if a student were to spend their year of training using a fake animal.  I do realize that your letter also included an "internship" time during the year's course.  This would certainly help but, in my estimation, would not be adequate to teach real-life grooming.

Even the stupidest cat seems to know more than any dog. - Eleanor Clark

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Posts: 786
Reply with quote  #3 
My concern is this plain and simple... who is teaching??? what are they teaching??? and what sales pitch's are they using to get people to come and sign up???... I personally am getting quite tired of these girls who went to a 'school' or 'training' and expect to be making big bucks but they dont know a thing!!! It may be far better to apprentice with an experienced groomer, but then again with as many as I have come across who are in it for the money these days... sheesh... it is a real mess.

to date at this location... gone through 5-7 groomers who went for training somewhere and dont even know basic anatomy let alone how to brush, comb or scissor. Sorry to rant but it does get tiring.

In life, a sense of humor will always prove an asset. Find the joy and humor in all you do and you shall never regret a thing.

Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #4 
I know what you mean about groomers who dont know their way around a dog. I have hired and dismissed several "On the job" trained girls and found them to be lacking in common grooming basics as well as customer service basics. The school I went to "SC School of dog grooming" was a great school. we tested and trained weekly on things like AKC conformation, and charactor and clips plus clipper servicing and all the things you need to be a groomer.

The idea of grooming school is to not only teach you the cuts, but the breeds and the skills to run the shop. plus the internship to give you the practice you need.

Teresa Ann Hewitt

Posts: 8
Reply with quote  #5 
The problem with the industry is that we all have good & bad ideas about certification. It should be up to the individual to get more education and try to get better. I feel that the the government should not tell us how to run our business (because they can't run theirs now), but if something isn't done soon it may not be up to us if we want to be regulated (think how long it took for a gun law bill to be passed when Regan was shot). Do we want the vets to be telling us how to groom...??  NO If we don't do something it may come to this. With the deaths of a few pets each year it will only take 1 important person for it to come to this.

In the 2 legged side (humans) they have to have 8 hrs/yr of education to keep their licenses. Would this be too much for us? One weekend @ a trade show would cure that.The ones that are not wanting this may be scared and don't know that the con tining education would help all of us. With as many smart people out there it should be simple to come up with rules & regulations.

I would hope that NDGAA, ISCC, IPG would step forward and try and help with ideas on how to make it happen. Just to let you know about being certified. I call 3 different high school sports. Each year I have to attend classes to go over the rules and changes in each sport. The number of hrs I attend comes to about 24 to 30 hrs, I've being doing this for over thirty yrs, do I like this no but I go because if I want to do this I have to. So for all the Winny butts get a grip.

If you want to see what happens when a pet suffers type in your search engine dog burned in mauldin. Look @ the pictures and tell me what happened. No one does, because it was not determined if it was owner waiting to long or from the groomer.

1 last thing...maybe someone can answer this for me.....WHY ARE GROOMERS STILL DIPPING DOGS?????  Have they not heard of front line or advantage....duh



Posts: 161
Reply with quote  #6 
talk2the paw, why are groomers still dipping dogs? Because dogs are still coming in with fleas and ticks and the owners refuse ("can't afford") Frontline or far as individual groomers being responsible for more education so they can become better...there should be a minimum standard that every "groomer" has to meet before they should even start working on animals.  If I had a say so in the matter I would get rid of these 8-week, 12-week, 16-week grooming courses that a lot of these grooming schools are offering. Too many of these graduates are getting out of school thinking they can just jump into a grooming job and speed through 8-10 dogs a day and they couldn't tell you the difference between breeds or haircut styles or what shampoos should be used. I think every "school" should make it mandatory that all students enter an apprenticeship program for at least 4-6 months, attend a few dogs shows and at least one grooming workshop before they are given a graduation certificate. I have worked with several "new" graduates from grooming schools (one of which is a world-renown dog grooming school) and none of these groomers could put a top-knot or pompom on a poodle. One new groomer I worked with went through her grooming school's courses twice (and graduated top of her class) yet I had to finish all her dogs because she didn't know anything about basic patterns.
No, I do not think the government has any business getting involved with the dog grooming industry (I have been doing this for too long to start jumping through hoops now) but I think that all groomers need to hold themselves (and their employees) to a higher standard and only expect the best. I think that more workshops and certification programs need to be made my area we only have one come by once a year...some areas don't even get any workshops at all.


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Posts: 22
Reply with quote  #7 
On one hand, I would love to see some type of regulation in the industry because there are too many people picking up a pair of scissors and clippers and calling themself a groomer.  But, on the other hand, I do NOT want the government sticking their noses into my business.  Can you imagine the expense that it would put on the groom shops and individual groomers?  This cost would have to be either absorbed by the business or the expense passed onto the customer.  They already complain about the expense, do you think that more costs would be welcomed?

Continuing education?  I actually do not feel that I need to go to classes or siminars in order to do my job.  And, I don't know about a lot of you, but I barely afford a short vacation each year.  How am I to afford a trip to a siminar and the expense of attending?

With today's world, I have the internet too keep up to date on the latest products.  But, as with many of you, I like to stick to the tried and true.  What works for one groomer does not work for others.  I also talk to other groomers locally and we share ideas.
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