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February 2018

Too much "noise"



Yes, that is what I said. Too much noise. Now, based on this blogs last few posts I am sure you think "OH she is going to talk hearing protection!" but not today. MAYBE next week ut not this week.

The NOISE I am talking about right now is information overload. 


When I was learning to groom the internet was a vastly different place than it is now and we always had to take classes with people we felt knew what they were doing or HOPE they did anyway! Nowadays there is so much information at the tips of our fingers! EVERYWHERE you look there are blogs, video channels, facebook groups, online forums...but is it TOO MUCH NOISE?

I was talking to a friend of mine last night on messenger and she said " I used to be able to set some angles on any dog I was given and today I cannot seem to get it right to save my life!" She went on to say "I watch every video, go to every seminar, every class and look through hundreds of photos a day and I am still failing". 

I told her she had too many influences. 

My advice to her, and you, is choose whom you listen to carefully. Make sure they line up with your style. You understand them. They make sense to YOU. Stick with one of two people who match up stylistically and who make sense to you. Not everyone grooms the same way. Not everyone is a good teacher. Not every teaching style is good for every student.

I told her to stick with the ones she had found most helpful. Find ONE PHOTO of what she is striving to achieve on her toy poodle and paste it to her phone, her wall, her tackbox. CONCENTRATE on one thing. Not all the outside noise. Turn off YouTube. Stop doing every class you can and focus on one or two instructors and try to get it "right". 

Sometimes when you open up yourself to too much information it only becomes noise and you have no idea what you are hearing not to mention it is really hard to apply so many different techniques in one little toy poodle...

Filter out the noise. Then it becomes easier to find the truth as it applies to your grooming (and life in general). 

12 dogs over 10....


Flower at 2 years old

My house is full of old dogs. Chris is 16. Flower is 16. Kraemer is 14. Scrappy and Minnie are 13. Kermit is 12. Luke is 11. Willie is 10. Bob and Cricket are 12 this year. Piggy is 11 and CC is 10....


Kermit at age 8

So as you can imagine we have incontinence issues (I have 4 pee pads on trays in the house) and arthritis as well as blind and deaf dogs. 

I'ts not easy. Every day we look for breathing. Check for warmth. Make sure they get the pain meds if they are o them and their eyes doctored. 


Scrappy at age 3 (I think)

I know that this year has the potential to be a very very rough year. Kramer is having trouble eating and getting on and off the couch. He is no longer able to stay kenneled without needing a bath. Flower is having bouts of senility. 

I am writing this to let people know that even though the dogs may be old, and they may have trouble walking or climbing they are still full of love. 


Today I bathed Kraemer for the third time in a week. He has trouble standing so I let him sit or lay down. No force drying. Just a soft pad with a nice big fan in a warm room. He cannot handle the force dryer nor could he stand if he needed to. Wheatens don't often live to 14....we are lucky he has.  Saturday I groomed Flower, who had been a competition favorite of mine years ago and I had to have someone hold her and talk to her to get her shaved down. Her senility means she is scared and doesn't know what is being one. But when I picked her up after we were done she wrapped her legs around my arm holding on like always and licked my nose. She still loves me. Then she went scampering around like a bunny rabbit. 

Because I have so many old dogs of my own I can comfort owners with older dogs and explain to them how we do things to make them comfortable. THICK memory foam pads with soft covers. Quiet dryers for those who cannot handle the larger ones anymore. Simple, fast haircuts. No more poodle feet. pads for the table to prevent sliding and soothe their joints. Padded restraints or no restraints if possible. Giving plenty of breaks if needed. Working with local vets to ensure that the pain level after a groom is managed (Many prescribe pain meds for two days before and two days after).  I guess they trust me to make those decisions because I am living it.

It is time to start thinking about "the big decision" when it comes to two of my guys. It is never easy but when they have been with you since they were born in your kitchen its harder I think. I am the reason they are here. 

Love your dogs every day. Hug them. Walk them. Take pictures of them happy and young. They do not live forever...