First impressions are everything and when you first walk in to a grooming salon your first impression should never be to walk back out. While salons can be busy high stress places good salons will never let you or your dog feel just how hectic it really is. There is never anything wrong with doing some research before trusting someone with grooming a dog; because a person’s dog is like their child and should be treated that way. There are a couple different things to look for the first time anyone goes into a grooming salon and keeping an eye out for these things will help to ensure a happy grooming experience for your pet.
The upkeep of a salon can quickly tell you how much the groomers care about their work. No, a salon is not ever going to be ‘hospital clean’ — with a job as dirty as grooming you can’t really expect it to be. If the day is busy there will probably be hair all over the floor, but if you see the groomers doing nothing and there is hair everywhere understandably a few red flags will go up. No matter how busy groomers are the ones who really care about their job always make an effort to keep their tools clean. Seeing someone brush off blades before and after using them or wiping their scissors off should show you that they aren’t going to let just anything get on your dog.
Attitude is everything when working with people and with dogs. Your groomer should never seem upset, stressed, angry, or inattentive in any way. While it is important to be polite to a customer it is more important to be in the right state of mind when grooming, because dogs can feel when the person they are with is stressed and it can cause them to also be more stressed. Always try to have a groomer who seems happy with their job and is still calm when things get hectic. If your groomer seemed frazzled when you are speaking with them don’t be afraid to ask for a different groomer. The process will be stressful enough for your dog and doesn’t need to be made worse by the groomer being stressed too. Dog’s signs of stress can be very subtle so it is important to watch them to know if you are putting them in a situation that they will not react well to.
Finding the right groomer may be easier than you think and once you find them hold on to them. Most salons will be more than happy to schedule you with the same groomer every time and usually keep records in case you forget who you want to be with. Getting to know an individual groomer will make you more at ease when dropping off you pup and also makes your dog more comfortable because they will also start to trust the groomer more. And when you know your groomer (or groomers if you have a few you trust) they will be able to help you every step of the way from the actual groom to keeping it up at home. Don’t be afraid to ask them questions because once that bond is formed they will love your dog as much as you do.