Cindy’s Blog

You are here: You are here: Home > Cindy’s Blog > Dog Groomers/Tipping/& Attitudes

Dog Groomers/Tipping/& Attitudes

My attempt of expanding my horizons.  It went nowhere.

These are the stars that people have in their eyes when it comes to grooming their pet.  Reality hurts.

Life is funny, or should I say people are funny.  Being a dog groomer you get to see how people treat you, and believe me their true colors come out. But then again, I am sure this is true with a lot of professions. For instance, a lot of my customers also went to the same hairdresser I went to in Mississauga. I learned this while getting my roots done and we bonded over gossiping over bitchy clients. To learn we were talking about the same person really made us chuckle, and confirmed it was them not us. I came to the conclusion that if they were miserable, whiny, and cheap with me, chances are they were the same way with their hairdresser, mechanic, landscaper, shoe repairperson, ect. 


Some people don’t understand the concept of tipping, which yes… applies to your dog groomer.  For instance I used to do a beautiful red mini poodle in Oakville for $55 + 7% tax.  She’d give me 3 twenties and waited for that $1.15 change every time.  This always bugged me.  So for her Christmas appointment I had the $1.15 in nickels and dimes in my pocket. I came into her house when I was finished, with my boots on (the horror!) and handed her Muffin, which BTW I did an especially good job that day. She handed me her standard 3 twenties, and waited. (Note: no Christmas tip).  With my wet gloves with the fingers cut out, I reached into my pocket full of dog hair and coins and slapped her change on her Chippendale half-moon hall table and left.  Needless to say she never called me again, which was the game plan.

Professionals have to realize sometimes there is no winning. You have to recognize with some that disaster is right around the corner.  Take for instance Mrs. Pierce of Erin Mills, Ontario.   I asked her repeatedly not to let her kids run around the van while I was grooming her Lhasa Apso, and keep them from slamming the broken front screen door.  It would upset the dog, and it would jump when that door slammed loudly. 


Finally I knew she would not discipline her kids, so I finally cut bait and told her please don’t call me anymore.  A year later a woman named Mrs.” Pearce” called about her Lhasa Apso,  same street, so of course I assumed it was her.  I said, “I thought I said I didn’t want to groom your dog anymore?”  She sounded puzzled.  She started to laugh and said, “Oh you must have dealt with the other Mrs. Pierce who lives on this street. I am the nice Mrs. Pearce who spells her name different.”  Well did we have a good laugh and I got all the gossip about the mean Mrs. Pierce. Needless to say she earned her reputation.  So once again, it confirmed it wasn’t me,  but her.


My stories are endless about my clients, but most were great.  Many of them used to sit in the van with me and have coffee when I groomed their dog. It was great fun.  The point I am trying to make is that I saw a pattern in the way some people treat service people. For instance there was this one family, well known in Mississauga. (You just have to look at the hospitals and see their name plastered all over the place).  I groomed their schnauzer regularly.  Their nanny would hand me the check already made out for exactly $58.85 then ask if I could cut their Boston Terrier’s nails.  This went on for years.  So I got fed up with them too.  I finally told the nanny to tell her boss next time the Boston’s nails are $10.00 extra.  I never heard from them again.  


The point is some people’s ignorance, nastiness, cheapness, whininess evolves.  Years after my career in dog grooming was long over, I had a good friend who lived on a street whose Bichon Frise I used to groom.  I still remember her name and house quite vividly and she still lives there.  She tipped me well, then proceeded to complain about the job I did.  Finally I admitted defeat and told her obviously I’d never be able to satisfy her no matter how much I tried.   I was telling my friend the story, with more gory details, and she said, “Yeah, no one gets along with her on the street”.   So with my theory re-enforced, I still believe I am pretty good at summing up people.


So if you are still reading this blog, (which my brother says are too long), in spite of what Mr. Pink says about  tipping, in his this  famous movie scene,  you should tip at least your hairdresser & yes, your dog groomer. (Please).  They’ve earned it.


EPILOGUE: To read about Cindy’s most “challenging” client, please click the link below: