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A Groomer uses another Groomer.

Friday, 9 November 2018 01:33 PM

Are our clients as neurotic as me?

Today I had to take my 2 standard poodles to the dog groomer for baths, I'm not being lazy, I have injured my back. I was asked a few questions about their health and temperament and what I wanted to be done. I was told it would take approx 2 hours and that they would phone me when they were ready. I had some concerns that they didn’t ask who our vet was, or write down all the information I had just given them…. Should I have signed something?

I looked at my dogs’ poor sad faces as they went into the salon. They will be ok, the place looks professional. I wanted to scream “be good to them,” “they don’t like baths,” “make sure they are safe”. I noticed that the groomer looked a bit harassed but I just kept quiet, I didn’t want to add to her obvious stress and annoy her.

I left, feeling anxious about leaving my babies for so long. I tried to keep myself occupied so as not to think about them, on their own without me, in the company of strangers. They hate a bath, should I just go back and see how they are? Are they barking or crying? Will I give the salon a call? There’s one and a half hours left, would it be too soon just to ask?

They had been away for one full hour and it honestly, felt like a day. It took me all my strength not to phone and check on them. 

Half an hour left. Should I go in and see if they are ready? I know they said they would phone but I am sitting here outside the salon in the car. What harm would it do? I would feel so much better knowing that they where coping. I could hear one, Rhea, barking. I had told them she would, I hope she’s not been barking the whole one-hour forty-eight minutes I have been away.

It has been two hours, I survived. Still, no phone call but they did say two hours. Shall I just go in? They are a minute late!!! did they write down my phone number? Has something happened? They should have phoned by now, I’m going to go in and see what’s going on!!!

Then the phone rings, thank god.

They are fine, nothing happened to them, they looked happy and relaxed. All that worry for nothing. Though I am not that impressed with how they looked, not dried properly but it’s just about ok.

I asked how they behaved? Dolly was good she said and I laughed and what about Rhea? “Dolly was good” came the reply. This hurt me a bit.

I already knew from their website that dogs under 30kgs cost £30 each and my 2 weighed in at 24kgs. I thought that this was not the ideal way to charge for grooming but offered my £60, to be told, and quite curtly, that there was a problem on their site with pricing and that it would £40 each. No apology. I paid, left a tip and took my dogs all the while thinking I will not go back there.

Why won’t I go back?

  • No recording of information

  • Inadequate gathering of information

  • No terms and conditions to sign

  • Groomer looked harassed

  • Not happy with how dogs where finished

  • Negative comment about Rhea

  • A discrepancy between website and salon prices

  • Attitude of staff

Today the shoe was on the other foot, anxious about leaving my dogs, wanting to phone or go back early and not being happy with the professionalism or standard of work. Questioning price and being hurt by a throw away comment about my dog barking. A professional should give the client confidence that they can cope with a noisy dog and certainly should not make you feel bad about your dog’s behaviour that they had been pre-warned about.

But was I too easily hurt, or oversensitive? I never mentioned or gave them the chance to rectify the poor finish that I was unhappy with, then left a tip letting them think I was. I should have asked about how they store information about the dogs or point out that they had not asked who their vet was.

It Really made me think. 

How many of our clients think like me? How many would go on social media to complain? How would we know that a client like me had even had a problem? 

Maybe we should all have a think?

Carol Miller LCGI, ICMG

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