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Giving Dogs Medication Is A Pain In The Butt

, , , , | Right | March 23, 2022

I run a dog grooming facility that operates out of the same building as (very ethical) dog breeders. Sometimes I hand off medications for owners of expecting mothers:

Owner: *Walks in.* “Hey, [My Name]!”

Me: “Hi, [Owner’s Name]! Your dog’s medication is there on the counter for you. All the instructions are on the piece of paper.”

The instructions are pretty clear, indicating dosage, further instruction for the dog’s pregnancy, etc…

Owner: *Looks over the syringe of de-worming medication.* “Oh, so I give this to her anally right?”

After a moment of stunned silence, in the quietest voice possible while still being clear:

Me: “No… Orally…”

Owner: *Kind of laughs it off, shrugging.* “I’ve never done this before, I don’t know how this works.”

Me: “I’m pretty sure the breeder wouldn’t be asking you to give your dog an enema.”

Of Dobermans And Dragon Ladies

, , , , | Right | March 16, 2022

I have been a bather for around two months, which means basically that I am the gofer of all the groomers. A dog peed on the floor? Get the bather. Need to vacuum up hair clippings? Call the bather. Phone call with an angry customer? Where’s that stupid bather?

As a bather, I am told that I will have no more than eight to ten dogs in an eight-hour shift, preferably with three dogs checked in at once, a three-hour period to work on said dogs, then three more dogs, three hours, etc. It never goes down that way, of course, but I am young and naïve at this time and just nod and smile.

I come in to start my shift to find that I have four dogs already checked in and waiting. Okay, I can do that. I get to work. I get called out of the back and away from a particular Shih-Tzu, who is spinning its head around 360 degrees and spitting pea soup, to check in the fattest Doberman in the history of dogdom.

The woman requests the whole shebang — bath, special shampoo, teeth brushing, nail grinding — everything except having the nails painted. Okay, no problem. I tell her that will be three hours, pickup time at 1:00 pm, sign here, have a good day.

I kennel the Shih-Tzu long enough to wash the Doberman and plunk her in the kennel to dry. I make a note that I’ll have to get her out around 12:30-ish, at the latest, to do her nails and brush her down.

What you have to understand about bathing is that it’s a matter of timing. First, you check for matted hair, trim as necessary, and wash down your dogs. If they’re not brachiocephalic (the “ran into a glass door dogs,” i.e. bulldogs), extremely old, or otherwise breathing impaired, slap a kennel dryer on them and let them mellow. If they are brachiocephalic etc., you have to dry them by hand or with the blow dryer, which, trust me, all dogs love (sarcasm here). You have to arrange this in such a way that Dog A will be ready for brushing while Dogs B and C are drying and then rotate. If I manage to get done early, I call the owners and tell them they can come to get Fido whenever.

While all this is going on, my lovely coworkers have checked in yet more dogs that I have to work into the rotation. It is 12:30 when one of the groomers calls back and asked if Blossom, the Doberman, is ready to go.

Me: “What? No, not yet. She still needs to be brushed and have her nails done.”

Groomer: “Okay. Her mom’s here. I’ll tell her.”

A moment later, the groomer is back.

Groomer: “She’s really mad. You’d better come.”

Me: *Thinking* “Oh, really? Joy and rapture.”

I come out, and the lady is practically breathing fire; she is heretofore known as Dragon Lady.

Dragon Lady: “What do you mean, my dog is not done?! She’s been here for two hours! What’s there to do to a dog in two hours, huh? Give me my dog!”

Me: “Ma’am, I am almost done. We ask for three hours to groom your dog—”

Dragon Lady: “That’s way too long! It shouldn’t take that long!”

Oh, yeah, lady? Maybe not for one dog, but at this point, I have six dogs in the back, each with a different pick-up time and different “spa treatments” that I have to dish out, several of which are long-haired and require even more time. Would you like to come and wrestle with the hydrophobic Husky in kennel nineteen while I trim Blossom’s nails?

Outwardly, I apologize again and tell her that if she’ll give me a few minutes, I can finish up Blossom and they can go. She huffs at me and stalks out. Awesome.

I put away the dog I was working on and pull out Blossom. I manage to hoist her overweight butt onto a table and start to brush her down, and here comes Dragon Lady… with the store manager.

The Dragon Lady is still going strong.

Dragon Lady: “I had plans for today! This is the worst service I’ve ever had! I’m never coming back here again!”

You promise?

Dragon Lady: “I’m going to miss my shows because of you people!”

The store manager takes me aside and wants to know what’s going on. The Dragon Lady, apparently, has told her that I was rude, that I was lazy, that I was taking extra time with her dog, that I was running late, blah blah.

I’m already upset over Dragon Lady’s attitude from earlier, and I’m about ready to cry at this, because for every minute that I’m stuck dealing with Dragon Lady’s tantrum, I’m getting behind on schedule, and oh! Look, they’re checking in yet ANOTHER bath dog for me! Yay!

I show the manager the lady’s paperwork from sign-in. Along the bottom, it clearly states “Pickup Time: 1:00 pm.” The manager nods and takes the paper to show the lady.

A little later, she’s back.

Manager: “If you have the dog done by one, she says she won’t complain.”

Nothing like a little pressure. And nothing like trying to grind the nails on a large dog when it sees its “Mommy” standing right over there and wants to go home. There’s a reason that we ask the owners not to stand around watching, and it’s the same reason that preschool workers try to distract the kiddies at drop-off while Mommy and Daddy are sneaking out the door.

So, what should have been a five-minute nail grinding turned into the hellacious sumo-Doberman grappling match of the year. Adding to this, I am fairly short, meaning I have short arms, making it difficult enough for me to get a large dog in the nail-clipping body-lock, triply so if the dog is fighting back.

I did finish the dumb dog on time (ha!) and even had a few minutes to spare to spritz her with some doggy cologne.

The Dragon Lady gave me a tip.

A whole dime.

Groomed For Disappointment

, , , | Right | December 8, 2021

A customer comes in shortly before we close.

Customer: “I need you to bathe my dog.”

Me: “Sorry, ma’am, but one of our coworkers called in sick and so we can’t handle as many clients as we usually would. We can’t take any more dogs today.”

Customer: *Beyond pissed.* “I can’t believe that someone would call in sick! You need to bathe my dog!”

She causes such a scene that I have to stay nearly two hours after my shift ended to bathe her dog.

I look at her customer profile and see that not only has she gotten mad about us not having openings before, but once claimed she was going to show up and not leave until we bathed her dog despite us being fully booked, and has complained multiple times that her normal groomer won’t come in before her scheduled shifts to do her dog.

As far as we can tell, she’s now going somewhere else for grooming and only brings the dog to us for maintenance baths. Dunno why she even bothers with us anymore if we’re so horrible?

How To Get Ahead Of The Search

, , , | Right | August 5, 2021

I’m a pet groomer, and I’m working on a client when a lady comes in to get her invoice for her pet that another coworker groomed. We’re making a bit of small talk and she’s absently digging through her purse on the counter.

Customer: *Exasperated sigh* “I just can’t find my glasses.”

Trying to find the most delicate way to put it, I ask:

Me: “Ah, is it a different pair than the one on your head?”

Winter Is Not Coming Out

, , , , | Right | June 8, 2021

It is an unusually busy time of day. The parking lot is packed full of customers either dropping off or picking up their pets, and there is only one person working the receptionist position. I am a groomer, but I am asked to help by picking up a ringing phone nearby. Due to the ongoing crisis, we are doing curbside service and not letting anyone in the building. You call us and we go to your car.

Customer: “Hi, I’m picking up Winter! How much is it going to be?”

Me: “Okay! Let me take a look at the estimate you signed, and I’ll let our receptionist know you’re picking up.”

I check the price.

Me: “Okay, looks like it’s [price] for the bath and [additional fee] for the medicated shampoo you asked us to use.”

Customer: “What? Did you raise your prices? I’ve never paid that much!”

I explain the price breakdown and tell her there was a price increase at the start of the year. It’s now summertime. She continues to complain, so I ask her if I can have someone go out and talk to her. She says yes and tells me which car she’s in — the only car in the lot of that color — and I let my manager know what’s up.

Manager: *Approaches the car* “Are you picking up Winter?”

Customer: “No! We’re not!”

Manager: “Oh, I’m sorry about that.”

My manager starts looking for the owner, eventually going back inside to look at the account to call them back. The customer storms in without a mask, which is at this point ILLEGAL.

Customer: “Where’s my dog? What’s the holdup? I’ve been waiting forever!”

Manager: “Sir, I need you to step outside. Nobody is allowed in the building right now and you have to be wearing a mask. Who are you picking up?”

Customer: “It’s Winter! I’m not leaving till I get my dog! You need to get me my dog right now!”

Manager: “Sir, I came to your car and asked if you were here for Winter, but you said no.”

Customer: “Yeah! Why aren’t you getting my dog?! You came to my car!”

Manager: “I did, but you said Winter wasn’t your dog. If you could please step outside, we can continue this conversation.”

My manager steps outside and the customer follows.

Customer: “This is unacceptable! We’ve been waiting so long!”

Manager: “I’m sorry for the wait, but as you can see, we are very busy and other customers have come to pick up their dogs as well, and it’s just the one receptionist.”

Customer: “We’ve been waiting longer than them!”

The customers who are waiting outside patiently, who were here first, are giving this guy the stink eye. He doesn’t notice and continues his rant.

Customer: “Obviously, you don’t know how to do your job right! This is horrible customer service! You should give me a discount for this! And I want my dog now!”

Manager: “I’m sorry, sir, but the price that was signed for during check-in, [price], is what the price of the bath and special shampoo is. I will not be giving you a discount today, especially not after how mean you’ve been. Furthermore, we will not be releasing your dog to you until the bill is paid, as per policy.”

After more ranting and raving, my stone-faced manager gets the guy to cough up the dough and he brings the dog out.

Manager: “Here’s your receipt, sir.”


Manager: “That’s fine, sir. We do not want your business and you are no longer welcome here.”