Not all dogs like the bath as much as this lovely Golden Retriever!!!
NERVOUS OR SCARED DOGS
If a dog has not had sufficient socialisation and exposure to grooming as a puppy, for whatever reason, they can be very scared of everything to do with grooming. If you think about it from your dog's perspective, there's a lot to cope with from brushing to bathing, drying, scissoring and clipping - not to mention the noises!
Going gently and slowly and working with what your dog can cope with is usually best in the longer term. This way confidence can be built up and the dog realises that its okay, rather than becoming more stressed and anxious and eventually becoming impossible to groom.
As a trainer I can work with you to help your dog form a positive association - read through the article on helping your dog cope with the grooming process here.
Dogs come in all sizes, types and temperaments and they all have their individual thoughts about grooming, ranging from the laid back dog who likes to go to sleep, through to the nervous dog terrified of the brush and the dog who would rather bite than be combed. As such we have policies in place for dealing with nervous and aggressive dogs in order that injuries are minimised (to both dog and human) and dogs are not put through undue stress.
Some dogs hate being bathed and can turn into whirling dervishes, whilst others have real fears or phobias concerning clipping, scissoring or having their feet touched. This means that grooming can be a really stressful experience for them, and possibly result in the dog feeling they need to protect themselves, i.e. bite the groomer.
Some dogs have developed a real fear of the grooming process and become aggressive when any work is attempted. Often this can be worked through step by step using a similar approach to that for nervous or scared dogs (see a more detailed article here). However, if your dog is found to be aggressive and you have not informed us, this may result in your dog's groom being cut short and not completed. It may be necessary, in order keep both the groomer and your dog safe, to muzzle your dog - if you are unhappy for this to happen, and your dog is really struggling, we will have to cut the groom short.
Even with a muzzle, some dogs are so stressed and anxious that it is much wiser to attempt a small amount and build up to a full groom. I will NOT force a dog to be groomed just to 'get it done'.
Unfortunately, if your dog is very aggressive we may not be able to groom him or her - this is because as a solo worker it may not be safe. Instead, we will work with you on a plan to help your dog become confident with the grooming process.