The Doodle Pro Podcast: Unleashing Expert Training, Grooming, & Health Tips for Doodle Dogs & Puppies

Your Doodle Grooming Questions Answered: Why Do Groomers Charge So Much, Shave Dogs, or Poodle Doodles?

March 19, 2023 The Doodle Pro™, Corinne Gearhart with River Lee Season 2 Episode 41
The Doodle Pro Podcast: Unleashing Expert Training, Grooming, & Health Tips for Doodle Dogs & Puppies
Your Doodle Grooming Questions Answered: Why Do Groomers Charge So Much, Shave Dogs, or Poodle Doodles?
Show Notes Transcript

Enjoy our free gift to you. The Doodle Coat “Must Haves” Cheat Sheet at https://thedoodlepro.com/musthaves/

If you’ve ever wanted to know what your Doodle groomer is really thinking (or why you’re having difficulty getting on the same page), this episode of The Doodle Pro™ Podcast is for you! Host Corinne Gearhart welcomes River Lee, a sought-after speaker and owner of The Savvy Groomer, who is lifting the curtain on what goes on behind the scenes. You’ll get answers to questions like: 

  • How often should Doodles be groomed and starting at what age?
  • Why does grooming cost so much?
  • What level of skill do dog stylists require – and what occupational stress do they endure? 
  • What are current trends shaping the grooming industry?
  • Why do groomers hate Doodles? (Spoiler Alert: They don’t.)
  • How can Doodle Parents make life easier all the way around?

River, who is both a master grooming technician and business coach, shares insights into why Doodle hair maintenance isn’t as straightforward as you might imagine; how a pandemic influx of large, high-maintenance dogs and shop closings/retirements has generated a grooming vacuum; and where we can do better in terms of setting up our Doodles, our groomers and ourselves for success. As you’ll learn, it all starts with defining terms clearly, communicating consistently and setting realistic expectations all the way around. “If you build a relationship with your groomer, you’re going to be so much happier,” says River. “We all love the dogs. It’s a matter of coming together and bridging the gaps!”

Want to know how to brush the RIGHT way before your next grooming appointment? Then click here to listen to Episode #6 and find out everything you need to!

KEY TOPICS:

  • Question #1: What are the trends in the grooming industry as a whole and why is it so hard to get an appointment?
  • Question #2: Why is Doodle grooming so expensive?
  • Question #3: What do requests for hand scissoring mean in terms of groomers?
  • Question #4: How has the Doodle Deluge impacted groomers? :
  • Word of Advice: If your dog isn’t accustomed to grooming from a young age, they will always be stressed by the environment (and likely their coat badly matted as well).
  • Question #5: What does it mean to emphasize “humanity over vanity”?
  •  Question #6: Why is the “blow-out” so important (and challenging)?
  • Question #7: What can Doodle Parents do to prepare their dogs for the groomer?
  • Question #8: What are the top tips for keeping our Doodles from getting shaved?
  • Question #9: What’s the optimal grooming schedule for committed Doodle Parents?
  • Question #10: What are we doing that drives Doodle groomers crazy?



Do you know your doodle's learning style? Take our free quiz to find out and make training together easier and more fun! Visit https://thedoodlepro.com/learning now!

Test your Doodle Body Language knowledge with our FREE quiz!
https://thedoodlepro.com/body

Visit instagram.com/thedoodlepro for behind-the-scenes peeks at the doodles Corinne works with daily!

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: And if we wanna do better on our part, here's your chance to tell us what a lot of doodle parents ask, what are we doing that's driving groomers crazy? What can we do better? 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Unfortunately, there's too many to count, but let's start small , and it's not your fault. Okay? Yeah. You have to understand is that most groomers, 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: This week we're going to enjoy a special replay of our most popular episode. Groomers around the world have shared this with their clients. Doodle parents around the world have shared this with their friends, and I just love how it really helps bridge that doodle divide between groomers. And pet parents, so we have better understanding of what's going on at the groomers for our doodles.

As this episode has been buried deeper in the archives, I wanted to bring it up to our more recent subscribers and followers so you can enjoy the many lessons in this fantastic interview with grooming industry Expert River Lee. Enjoy this [00:01:00] episode. 

doodle breed dogs are easy to love,

 But can be challenging to.

I'm Doodle Expert Car Gearhart, also known as the Doodle Pro, and I'm here to help doodle parents have a more fulfilling and rewarding experience with their doodles. No one has professionally worked with as many different doodle breeds. Or has more experience with doodles than I have, and I love to share my expertise in a fun, compassionate, and non-judgmental way.

From my years of work and education in the pet care and dog training industry, I have an incredible network of skilled training, grooming, and veterinary professionals to share their knowledge with you and give you the doodle specific answers you are looking for. I hope you enjoyed today's episode as I help you parent your doodle like a pro.

Hello, this is Corin the Doodle Pro, and I'm thrilled to have a talented grooming business coach and [00:02:00] expert join us. Her name is River Lee, and not only has she been a groomer and owned her own salon, But now she coaches and is a business expert on the groomer side of things across the country. We are excited to get some answers for the many questions that doodle parents often have when they go to the groomers.

What is the groomer looking for when they say that the doodle needs to be brushed and what are we doing that's frustrating groomers and why is it so hard to get an appointment right now? I'm thrilled to have River with us to answer these questions and happy to introduce her now. Hello. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Hey, how is everyone?

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Wonderful. We're so happy to have you. I know I didn't give your background justice. If you can share a little bit more about what brings you to this point in your career and what you're doing now. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Absolutely. So for those of you guys that don't know me, my name is River Lee. I'm the founder of The Savvy Groomer, where I teach groomers to go from being [00:03:00] burnt out broken to healthy, wealthy, and happy, building a grooming business on their.

My background is unique. I opened up a grooming salon four days before my son was born cuz I was pregnant, living in my car, and I built that up to a five employee grooming salon with a membership model. We were doing 40 dogs a day. I built that up and I sold that and I actually went to feel an exclusive mobile.

I built that up and I sold it and a lot of it was figuring out how to best serve my customers as well. taking care of the pets. And that's really what I help groomers do. This is such a great opportunity. I feel like I should do a trigger warning. Like we are all friends here though. Yes. And I really wanna thank you so much for letting me have the opportunity here, because I think that we can bridge this gap.

I think there's so much anger on either side. , and I think it's really unfortunate. So my goal is today is we're here for the. Yes, and we're here to bridge this gap, so I'm hoping that we can at least help you guys understand. And river, 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: I shared with you that I posted on a couple doodle [00:04:00] groups on Facebook just polling what their top questions were as I got the opportunity to chat with you.

And it got volatile quick groomers and groomer and doodle guardians just fighting it out in the comments they would have to be shut down or deleted. People going into real life and pulling stuff from each other's profiles and attacking them. And I'm so grateful that you and I are on the same page, that we both share a love for dogs and want the best for these dogs, and there can be a better understanding of what each.

Is experiencing and how we can help each other. So I'm so happy to have this conversation. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Absolutely. And I hope when I said come into my group you'll see the difference. And I wanted you to see that not all groomers are crazy. Cuz I know in that group I said they were being absolutely belligerent and vile.

But in my group they were like, we hope we can find that happy medium. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Absolutely. And I You're a group, the Savvy Groomer where you help coach other grooming [00:05:00] businesses. Yes. They were so professional and respectful and just excited to hear our conversation. They really are and I can share, when I listed a bunch of questions, I listed some that.

Said things that I know groomers hear a lot that often are unfair. Like why do they insist on doodling my doodle, et cetera, just to gauge where people were. But people added their own questions. That included, what are we doing that are making groomers crazy? How can I make my dog better behave for the groomer?

What can I do to better prepare my doodle for the groomer? And I loved that approach came out organically, and that's what I'm really excited to get the answers to from. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Absolutely. So I'm here for you guys. I'm ready to answer your questions the best I can. Like I said, guys, I can't speak for my whole industry, but what I can do is speak for my students and myself as a groomer.

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Thank you. My first question as you're an industry expert is, can you talk about what you're seeing in the grooming industry as [00:06:00] a whole and what trends are happen? 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: So what a lot of owners, and I mean that by, doodle guardians or pet owners in general, don't understand is we're going through a massive shift in the industry.

Before we used to have illegal independent contractors that were being paid 50% commission, and these shops were not keeping up with pricing because, They were just not paying taxes on the groomers. They just saw that money as gravy. . So California, you now have to pay hourly and as a whole, we actually have to pay people as employees.

So the average shihtzu groom in the United States in 1980 was $45. If you put that to today's standards, that would be $144. And that is not including the increase in rooming products. It was not uncommon in 1980s. Use things like Dawn Dish. . And even 10 years ago, the average shampoo bottle was a gallon, was about 20 or $40.

And now higher level professionals are paying between 60 and a hundred. And there's even some products that are [00:07:00] $400 a gallon for shampoo. So there's a shift between becoming better groomers. We take better care. These people used to shave 10 dogs down a day. Using Don. And there's a lot of shift there.

So a lot of those old school groomers. Are not keeping up with the times. And so as an industry, we have to massively raise our prices because we have not raised our prices in 20, 30, sometimes 40 years. And a lot of groomers are getting incredibly burnt out just for the people that have retired, especially during Covid.

We need about 50,000 more groomers, not including all the Covid puppies, but just keeping up with the people that retired about 50,000 more groomers by 20. Jess, I have so many clients that'll talk to me and say, I would rather just close my doors. Yeah. And be done. And they'll have six or seven groomer employees, but they're not making any money.

Can you break 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: down a little bit for us? You said that they used to be into contractors where the cost goes for a groom. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: [00:08:00] Yeah. So just to put in perspective again, if you have seen the housing prices rise, like in California, for example, let's say a condo 10 years ago went for one 50. Now it's 500. The same commercial lease they used to be 500 is now $2,500.

So in a perfect world, what would happen is in a groom, 30% would go to payroll, which would be your groomer, your bather, and your recept. , you figure at least 20% is gonna go to taxes depending upon where you live. And then it really depends if they are mobile. Because if they're mobile, that van's a hundred thousand dollars.

The professional mobile van's a hundred thousand dollars. And so if you have that mobile for five years and then you pay it off, you have some leeway. But if it needs a repair, you're gonna lose a week or two down. Especially right now, guys, with everything being so hard to get, a lot of people are actually buying a second van.

because it's cheaper for them to pay two van payments than it is to lose several weeks of income because they can't get a part for their grooming van. And things like workers' comp. Workers' comp is extraordinarily high with the new [00:09:00] legislation that's trying to pass with things like, I don't know if you guys know this, and please don't panic.

Most insurance companies see dogs as a depreciating asset. So if you purchased your doodle for $2,000 YouPay or neuter it, it's no longer what they consider income produc. So now it's worth half. And then if that dog gets older, it depreciates in value. So responsible business owners, and this is what I teach, they have what's called sometimes called a have a heart clause.

, which is, we're going to fix your dog because your dog has intrinsic value. However, a lot of insurance companies have artificially kept these prices low, because if something happens to your dog, it's only if you hurt a car. Guess what? You don't get a brand new. . And if someone, God forbid, let's say, broke your doodles leg, God forbid heart, it is $5,000.

If your dog's only worth 1500, that insurance company's only gonna give you that $1,500. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: And the grooming business then needs to cover that difference if they choose 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: to. That's right. They're not legally [00:10:00] obligated you because pets are property, unfortunately, and a lot of rumors are not expecting that Bill.

 And because I had a student today, her payroll. Is actually 85%, and that includes her. And she grooms 10 dogs a day, six days a week. And she takes only the money she makes. So her staff take 80 to 85% of everything that her business does. So she's actually losing money, employing all of those groomers.

And it's very unfortunate because she's I would just rather quit. She's like, why am I doing this? I'd rather just close. , 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: which helps you understand why some of even the most popular salons have closed or didn't reopen after Covid. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Absolutely, and I do think it's important. I'm in my thirties.

I know I look like I'm 12, but I'm in my thirties . I have carpal tunnel in both of my hands. I need my left shoulder replaced. They won't do it before I'm 40. and I only groomed for about 15 years. . [00:11:00] So groomers that are grooming, and I have to admit, I switched to cats because grooming big dogs destroys your body a lot faster.

. And I don't think owners understand that because, just from a time and energy and effort perspective, one, let's say 45, 50 pound doodle is about two to five Yorkies. If I talk to a groomer, I said, would you rather groom eight Yorkies or one doodle? A lot of times they'll say eight NOKs, because I don't hurt.

At the end of the day, I can go home and hold my child. I can go home and go for a walk with my 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: dog. And that's often because of the size difference of the eight versus 80 pound, or is there more to it than. , there's 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: a lot more to it, and I'm really gonna oversimplify. A lot of doodles are what's called a combination coat, which is very rare.

And some of them will have an undercoat and a top coat, and they still need a haircut, and you don't know what you're gonna get. You could also have a dog who has different hair patterns in different places. Lots of [00:12:00] cowlicks that may require a lot more scissoring, that may require a lot more brushing. It may require more skillset.

When I'm setting the coat of a standard poodle, for instance, most of them are pretty part, same, similar coat. Yeah. So I can put, a stand dryer on and just stretch the coat. However, with a doodle, I actually have to pay attention to which way I'm going. In what direction? It reminds me a lot of when I, I used to breed and show labs and some of my labs would've cow licks, but you wouldn't show a dog like cow licks all over because it would take so much time.

And that's to short hair, dog. And for better or worse, a lot of doodle owners want those more plush cuts. And most people with small dogs, it's a lot less maintenance. So Yorkie's gonna have very flat, thin hair, basically two haircuts they want. They either want it long and flowing. , which is really easy to do or they want it really short.

And I do think that owners forget anything over an inch has to be hand scissored. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: And can you explain for doodle parents what hand [00:13:00] scissoring means? Cuz they'll hear a lot from their breeders. Make sure they don't use a clipper and request hand scissoring. So if I bring in my 65 pound golden doodle and say I want it to be hand scissored, what does that mean to the groom?

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: So there's two different methods. There's comb, there's, using the comb method and then there is actually hand scissoring. A good example for doodle owners to understand is to take your ring finger and touch your thumb, and now do that for two hours because that is what a lot of time it takes to hand scissor a doodle.

And do that with both hands. If you just sat there, how tired would you be? You'll actually feel it in your arm because we don't use, this is the finger we use. We use our ring finger in our thumb. and it takes hours. And like I said, we have a groomer drought and a groomer shortage. To put in perspective, guys, it takes two years to make what we would consider a finished groomer and a finished groomer can do clipper work, but they cannot do hand scissoring.

They don't have the technique. And because of the way doodle coats, again are combination, they would be [00:14:00] able to do it on a dog's hair that is very similar. , for instance, like a standard poodle. It's the same hair on the top knot as it is on the legs and the tail, but with a doodle, they have to know how to blend in straight, flat hair with curly, wavy hair and not create these very unfortunate looks, right?

You've all seen those unfortunate looks, so that grammar probably needs five to 10 years. And just to put in perspective, it takes two years to create an average groomer, not a hand sister groomer. And the majority of groomers leave after five. So the majority of groomers either don't have that skillset, or if they do, they really can't do more than one to two of those handset or dogs a day.

And 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: when we're talking about the individual doodle needs, how have the influx of doodles on the market and in our families affected the grooming industry? 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: I don't think doodle owners, it's not, I always, and it sounds mean, trigger warning. I always say it's our fault, dis groomers for not creating [00:15:00] healthy boundaries with doodle owners.

I understand you want these really fluffy looks, but what happens is a lot of you guys come from labs, and I'll tell you, labs are like a Chevy, right? They're an easy car and you have a Ferrari. A standard poodle is like having platinum blonde hair. A doodle is like having mermaid. A lot of you guys want these very elaborate haircuts, and unfortunately the staff that can do them can only do a finite amount of them.

And as an industry, we used to only do probably one or two standard poodles a week at best, right? We didn't expect this influx of very large, high maintenance breeds. We really didn't see them. Old English sheep dogs were not popular, and if they were farm dogs, they got a shave down once a year, and you have that own standard poodles.

Their breeder starts, they're grooming around three or four weeks, so they're coming in at eight weeks and getting a groom every two to four weeks. . So they know what's going on. , there are so many people who close their shops because they don't wanna confront doodle owners. They don't wanna be mean to [00:16:00] doodle owners.

They don't wanna be mean to the dogs, but they just, it's easier for them to go work at Chick-fil-A than it is for that. And I wanna scare you guys, but if Ahi TSU is 65 to 85 , your doodle, even a mini doodle needs to start at $200. And these St Bead doodles, they need to be four or $500.

Especially if you guys want hand scissor. Because that's an entire groomer's worth of day. For them to go home and be able to spend time with their family, and a lot of them won't because they love the dogs and so they get bitter and resentful and it's really hard. They also will say, it's of like owning a Chevy, or a better example, someone gave me today, and it was really good.

They said, imagine if you've only ever owned electric cars and you waited. 10,000 miles to get your first oil change. And you were like, but the dealership never told me I needed an oil change. Imagine if you're a mechanic and that's all you got were people who used to own electric cars, who didn't need oil changes.

And you have to explain to them what an oil change [00:17:00] is and why their car needs it. And not only that, their engine is 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: blown. . That is an excellent analogy. I love that when you look at particularly backyard breeder, but when you look at some doodle breeder sites where they're advertising their puppies, and these are ones that have professional websites and everything, they'll often say, these are low or no maintenance coats, or do not bring your doodle puppy in to get groomed until they're a year old because it will ruin their coat.

So that's sort like that car owner. Who the dealer didn't tell them something and now the mechanic is trying to fix it. But unfortunately, what we know on our side with training and behavior, if you introduce a dog to a chaotic grooming salon, high velocity dryer being brushed clippers, nail grinders, all of that at a year old.

when they're past the point of being open and sociable to those things, you've got a lifelong difficult dog [00:18:00] to bring to the groomers. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Absolutely. And I think that's just it. There are so many groomers that they're like, if the dog's over four months, so it's never been groomed we'll never groom it. They will not take especially doodles.

And if a doodle is not used to doing something, if they're not used to being in that environment, it is really stressful for them and we don't want it to be stressful for them. And by then they have so much. That we're not sure what we're supposed to do in a way, and we can't make you happy, cuz if the dog's matted, we have the option of basically torturing your dog d matting it for hours and having its very first experience.

be this really unpleasurable experience or we have to shave it bald. , would say it's Mr. Clean Short, and neither one, we don't like your dog looking like a sacrificial lamb . That is not a look. , that is, isn't 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: something you're excited to hand over 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: either. Oh my God. Can you imagine being like, I'm so proud of my work and you're I mean they just it's a very unfortunate look and a lot When you shave them down, they just don't have that look. It's just some dogs have, I don't like standard poodles naked either. It's just not a good look for [00:19:00] them. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: I think it's wonderful to hear that groomers feel the same way and that it isn't a look that they desire, but it's out of necessity.

I always like the phrase that groomers use of humanity over vanity. Do you mind sharing a little bit what that means? The grooming 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: industry. So you, what I think a lot of doodle owners don't understand is when your dog is matted, it's basically being mummified in its own dead hair. So if you've ever had somebody who has really tough mental health and they're laying in, or they're very sick and they're laying in bed and they get a giant nap, an intentional version would be, A dreadlock.

Imagine coming to a hair salon and you have dreadlocks down to like your ears and you're like no. Brush it out, but I, I don't wanna pay extra or whatever. You're like, okay, you're gonna sit there and you want me to do this. Or worse, imagine if it's a child, or even worse, it's a special needs child.

You would say, absolutely not. That's not fair to that pet. It's not fair to that child. You'd be like, absolutely not. But doodles, for [00:20:00] them. It's funny because they do go through the coat change and I think what unfortunately owners don't understand, or guardians, I apologize. I love the term guardians by the way.

We say pet parents a lot, but we do too, whatever. I think one of the things you guys don't understand is that we don't know what kind of hair your dog's gonna have. And and we don't know at what age. And it's really funny. I just wanna point out if your breeder. You'll ruin the coat by shaving it. That actually tells me that dog is double coated because you can shave a standard poodle with anything beyond a surgical blade and you won't damage the hair.

The only dogs that will be damaged by shaving are double coated dogs. So shaving things like labs, goldens, pugs. So for me, if you guys see that, that is a little bit of red flag. And again, they might be like, we don't know if your dog's gonna be a double coated dog. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: And the double coat, the undercoat when they are.

You notice this more than I can get trapped in the wire curls on the outer side when [00:21:00] it's across. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: So the best way to think about it's like this. . So this is our undercoat, this is our top coat. If you have a dog that shuts, this is the insulation and this is the roof. So when you have a single coated dog, this is the roof and there's no insulation.

That's why if you have a single coated dog, you have to wear sweaters, right? Because they get cold. So the problem here is that when you shave it, it actually can grow backwards. And now your insulation can become longer than your top coat. Cause your top coat takes so much longer to grow. And this is an incredible simplification, guys, but what's tough is that, I have seen so many doodles that'll have, believe it or not, a poodle type coat as their under.

And then they'll have a straight flat coat on top. So as their undercoat is growing in, it's actually immediately locking up. And so these owners get very frustrated cuz like, why can't my dog be more than like a fourth of an inch? And it's because as that undercoat is growing in, it just grows in cuz it's curly.

 Into that straight coat. And there are things you can do. We, I call it setting the coat. Other groomers have other things and that's [00:22:00] basically, you blow dry the roots straight every one to two weeks. So if any, if I'm an Italian girl, if you, anybody out here with curly hair, any got curly hair, right?

Yeah. Right here. , if you're not careful the way you dry your hair, right? . But the difference is you don't go out into the pool or out into the ocean. and then not wash your hair. And so I think a lot of people want these beautiful voluptuous hair on their doodles. And I'm like, so the friends have the standard pools.

They actually spend. About three hours a week, blow drying and washing their poodles. Banding them up and their dog does not go swimming, does not do any of that stuff. And the second they're done showing, they zip them down. . . 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Understandable. . 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Yeah, it's a lot of work. And so with that undercoat, if you're, and again, we don't know, and honestly, your puppy's always gonna go through puppy change.

And depending upon when you spare new to your dog, your nutrition, there's so many. , your large braids may not fully mature their coat till they're three. So if you have a Bernadoodle or a Saint Bernadoodle, your coat may not fully mature till [00:23:00] they're three. And we can't tell you what that coat's gonna look like, but when it grows in, it's a matter of is this a straight undercoat?

Is this a wiry undercoat? Is this a, what we call a cottony undercoat? Or is there no undercoat? And it's tough for us because every dog is different, and we can have the same dog every four weeks, and the dog turns two. , right? And they've spayed the dog and they're like, I don't know why he's matting up so quick.

And we're like it's just no different. When you become older and your hair changes 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: ever, drop your doodle off at the groomer and wish you could be a fly on the wall and your groomer's break room. Here's your chance. We interviewed groomers across the US and gave them a chance to give real talk anonymously on what frustrates them and what they wish we doodle parents knew about doodle brushing.

Become your Doodle Groomer's new favorite client, and learn how to brush your doodle like a pro with our free gift. Download your free uncensored doodle brushing [00:24:00] guide@thedoodlepro.com slash uncensored, and it's if I come in with a picture of Jennifer Aniston's. Rachel hair and I said, I want to get this haircut at the salon.

I don't have that texture, nor is my face the same frame or structure as the Rachel picture. And so I know that a lot of doodle parents are given photos and guides from their breeders saying, show this to the groomer and make sure they follow these directions. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Yes. Trigger warning. We hate that. And I'll tell you why.

So here's the. A lot of times when we see that, and even with purebred dogs, let me clarify. Even with certain breed like lados and Polish sheep dogs and things like that, we hate that. I'll tell you why, because. Imagine this. Again, if you're eye like analogies, they help me a lot, visualize things. It's basically like saying, this is what we want you to do.

And for us it's okay, instead we're gonna offer what you do. You don't go to a restaurant and say, this is what I would like to eat. [00:25:00] And when you go to a tattoo artist, if you show them the exact picture of what you want, they're going to give you the artist interpretation of that. groomers come in two flavors.

They're artists or technicians. Your technician groom is more likely to give you what you want because they don't really have an artistic flare. I'm a technician groomer. I will generally do what you want, but again, if you want a certain haircut, just if you want a certain level of blonde, you may not get it the first time.

If you hand me, if you guys came in at eight weeks for your first, very first puppy bath and blow dry and you said, okay, this is what I would like my dog to grow. and I said, okay, you understand it's gonna take one to two years, and you're like, not a problem. A lot of groomers would really not mind that.

What happens instead is your dog's eight months, we're gonna have to turn that dog, like I said, into a sacrificial lamb. Yeah. And you have this beautiful picture. It's like coming you with dreadlocks, like you said, and showing Jennifer Anton and being, I want the Rachel. And you've got dreadlocks and you have black dye over, you know in your hair, right?

We can do this, but it's gonna take [00:26:00] till all that hair grows back. Thankfully doodle hair grows back and faster. But even then, we don't know what kind of undercoat or top coat your dog has. We don't know what your lifestyle is like. Again, it's, you wouldn't show. It's funny and I feel like this is why people.

I should say groomers like poodle people over doodle people because there's no poodle owner coming in with a continental or an English subtle kit, which is those fancy of haircuts and being like, my breeder gave me this. This is what they said my dog should look like. We'd be like, then go back to your breeder.

Let them go do that. And I think that's the unfortunate thing. That would be the equivalent. I think you guys understand that the things that your breeders are bringing in, if they're the breed cut, if you had a Welsh. Or a carry Blue Terrier and you said, this is my burrito. Thinks my dog should look like.

We would send you to a specialist who that's basically all they do. All they do is that cut. And I do wanna see more groomers that really have a flare for Doodle grooming becoming Doodle exclusive. But I do think like it's, we do the same thing. If you guys have ever heard of Asian fusion, it's super cute.

[00:27:00] It's a certain style. It is so cool. We 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: see it a lot on TikTok 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: and stuff. Yes. But again, it's like having, bringing that to the average groom, . , if you bring that, they're gonna be like, I have not spent the hundreds of hours perfecting that style of grooming. And unfortunately, a lot of those breed standard cuts are built by people who are not groomers.

or they're going to take so much time that we know you're not going to pay for it. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: When they have those pictures, which I see passed around a lot in our doodle community, you'll notice that most of them that they use as an example, are not freshly groomed and they have a beachy wave. They're very pc.

You see some of the eyes, not all of them, et cetera. Most of them, they're not, don't look matted, but they don't look like they've been brushed that day. And can you explain a little bit why the blowing out of the coat is part of the process when a groomer's doing 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: it? So I think what you guys have to remember, again, remember we talked about the under and top coat?

We have to set the coat, we have to [00:28:00] blow dry the roots straight. And guess what's attached to the brute skies? The ends. And we actually cut the coat dry. I think a lot of doodle owners don't know that. So we have to clean the hair, blow dry the hair. It's all straight cuz if you do have curly hair, I flattened mine and it's still starting to curl.

Stupid thing won't behave itself. , it's really difficult. You're also not gonna be adding product to your dog's hair. I tell doodle owners all the time, a lot of groomers will not send a dog home looking curly and beach wavy. But you can very easily just take some, ideally distilled water, spritz your dog and scrunch it, right?

Yes. It's so easy and it makes us so much happier because what happens is, as you're checking out the dog, we're double checking our work, and if we French, your dog's, We can't see if we've made a mistake. That's the tough part, right? And plus, if you guys imagine you're, if they're an artist, groomer, technician, groomers, were like, you want your dog?

Oh, wav me crazy. Whatever, man. Whatever you want. But an artist, you have just taken their perfectly sculpted [00:29:00] hands. There's a dog, they painstakingly their hands hurt. They might even be in the back popping an ibuprofen and putting their wrist on ice for that haircut. . And then you're like, oh, could you please mess that up for me?

And they're like, no, . 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Every strand is even. And we're scrunching it. Yes, . 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: It's cause, and it's funny too, because if you pay attention what groomers are, like the things that we appreciate in a haircut, you guys don't even notice. And it's funny cuz like we feel the same way about bows and bandanas. Like we want you to admire a groom and you're like, oh my God, I love the bow.

And we're like, . What about the groom? ? 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Look at the shape of that top dot. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: I know, yes. exactly oh he's got so much angulation. Oh I see. He had a narrow front. But you really made it look wide and voluptuous. Thank you so much. I mean we're, we're like, you fixed my dog's tail set cuz like it takes a lot.

You have to see what the faults are in a dog. Cause every dog has. Yeah, and then we like fix it. It's a lot of it, again, like standard poodles have less confirmation [00:30:00] correcting than when you're doing a doodle because if I breathe if you look at a lab's top line, their shoulder and the way it's connected, a poodles is very different.

So if you have a poodle back and then a lab. Shoulder, it's almost there's like this random like ridge and you'll see some of 'em have all this extra hair and a poodle. In a doodle, you guys don't want that extra poof, right? You want it to be more even and more balanced and that's great, but that takes a lot more work and it takes a really skillful eye to do that.

And that's not easy, especially cuz most dood. Are happy-go-lucky or they're anxious. I feel like they come in two flavors. So they're either like, panting, I excessively oh my God, I'm gonna die. Or they're like, hi, you're my friend and hi, you're my friend and hi, you're my friend. And that's very tough.

It's please sit still cuz I have sharp objects. Yes. We don't wanna cut you today. Please. Let's let's go home with all of her legs. It is hard. And I do think that's another thing too. You have to understand like it can take a year or two to have a dog sit perfectly still. So the people I [00:31:00] know that breed and show poodles their dogs are trained from three weeks of age to stand like a statue. And actually they'll have pillows and their dog will lay its head. Yeah. On the pillow. And it's tough because that dog we can hand scissor cuz it's taut from a very young age to sit perfectly still. And most of you guys are not teaching your your doodle stand.

I want you to think about, can you guys get your doodles to stand perfectly still standing up? No tail wagging perfectly still for 10 minutes. If you can't do it for 10 minutes, expecting us to do it for an hour or two. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: , especially with a hand scissor sort of request. That's an excellent point that some people were really interested in knowing.

How can they better prepare their doodle to be better for the groomer? I have some suggestions, but I'd love to hear if you have. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: First things first, please bring your doodle as soon as you can to a groomer. If you're worried about vaccines, get a mobile groom. and call your mobile groomer when you actually, [00:32:00] before you even get your doodle, like literally when you put the deposit down, call them.

A lot of them have a year waiting list. . And so that's a great way of doing that. Or calling the owner saying, listen, I'm one of those good, I'm, we call them unicorn doodle owners, I just put my deposit down. I wanna book, first thing in the morning from the time a puppy comes eight weeks, every two or so.

The things at home you can do is teaching your dog to stand, and if you look up on YouTube, ways to teach what's called stacking in the show world. Teaching your dog to stack and stand very perfectly. And there's many ways of doing that. I'm sure you have lots of dog trainers that can come on and train that.

Another thing that I think a lot of owners don't realize is don't use squirt bottles to create punish. We spritz things they could just, and your dog is gonna need product, okay? . So we use a water bottle. The other thing is too, is don't play with vacuums. Don't make the vacuum the monster. When I was a dog trainer, one thing I would teach people is to put whatever their food is, if they're a good eater.

Not all poodle mixes are good eaters, true , [00:33:00] but if they aren't, you actually put on YouTube. Just put on YouTube, the sound of a vacuum while they're eating and they're associating something positive. or you can say things like dryers on and then click the sound and give them something high value that they're like, ooh, this is really good.

Or throw the ball if they're fetcher, throw the ball and be like, and that way they hear that or they hear the sound and they associate that with something really positive. Don't use the water hose and your backyard is a play thing. Don't spray water and let them bite at it. Especially your herding mixes.

Yeah. Are going to see that. And what happens is we put them in a tub and they're a danger to our staff because they think they're playing and they can accidentally rip open our bathers hands. And they don't mean to, they've just always been told like chase the water and they're just excitedly biting at it.

And if my hands in the way, guess. That's it. And if you ever touch, I want you touch your hand muscles for a second. And by the way, this is how we make our money. , your dog could end someone's career because they're just playing, and there's obviously [00:34:00] things like brushing. But brushing, we always worry you, if you're gonna do brushing, you've gotta commit to it.

Don't half brush your dog. Don't skunk stripe. Brush your dog. Oh 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: yes. Explain what you mean with that. I know exactly what you mean, but explain that for us. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: So one thing that we notice, especially with doodle owners, and I always feel really bad cuz they're like so excited, they're like, I've been brushing my dog.

And I'm like, yes. And then it's what we call the skunk stripes. So if you imagine like the dog's back. It's literally just the dog's back. So it might be the head, but it's never the muzzle. So it's like the top of the head, the neck, and then all along down to the tail. And then we're like, what about the legs?

And they're like, what about the legs? Did you brush the legs? They're like, I think so . And so we always laugh cuz you guys will say just shave the mats out. So we're like, so you want him to actually look like a little sheep cuz we're gonna. Completely strip his legs and leave his whole body cuz you're like, you did a good job on the body.

Or they'll forget the belly. And it's really unfortunate too. I'm like, you know it's funny cause people are like, why don't people shave poodle faces and shave their feet? I'm like, have you ever tried to DMA a dog's [00:35:00] toes? No thank you. Oh, because don't they got all the hair in between. You've got a comb and brush that all up.

That's a lot of. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: And you can understand why the skunk brushing would happen, as that is how a co compliant doodle. Not one who's loving brushing will let you do. That's the position they'd likely lay in and the parts that bother them the least. And so you really have to counter condition and get them used to the belly behind the ears, the hips the tail.

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: I know, and it's so funny too because a lot of you guys unfortunately, are when you're petting your dog, you're adding a lot of natural oils and think about everything you touch. and you're putting all of that, whatever you've touched, and you pet your dog, you're actually putting that on your dog.

So if you put lotion on your body or you're putting product in your hair and you don't wash your hands before you touch your dog, cuz none of, nobody does. Yeah. Especially cuz you're like, you'll do a quick belly rub, so you'll put product in your hair and your dog lays on his belly.

You're like, Ooh, belly rub. Then you've just scrunched in all of that product. And if we only see your dog once a [00:36:00] month, we've got. 30 days worth of hair gel stuck in that belly, , , and it's just things we don't think about. Also, doing this motion, if you have curly hair, do you ever do this to your hair?

No, because it damages your hair. My husband 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: knows he's not allowed to touch my hair. When it's curly , this is going to not write up and . 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: It's, I feel like if we took all the curly girl hair knowledge and we just applied it to dogs, we'd all go, oh,

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: right. You bring up how often you're seeing the doodles. , can you tell me what, if we're not doing scissoring, if we're doing like a medium clipper. And they wanna avoid their doodle getting shaved. What would be if they were the unicorn doodle parent? And then what would you think the most reasonable would be for the average doodle parent?

What would you guys love to see? 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: So I'm gonna speak for me, not everyone else, because I feel like [00:37:00] every groomer, again, I'm a technician. Groomer, not an artist. Artist would be like, I wanna do this, and oh my God, da. So I think what's unfortunate is I feel like what you guys consider shaved, a lot of us just considered like a sport cut or what we would call a kennel cut.

, to us shaved is like to the skin, missed a clean, bald, like yes, what we would call a 10 strip. So when we think shaved, that's what we think. And again, I think that's a lot of misunderstanding. Also, a puppy cut is actually a poodle cut. So you say, don't poodle my doodle. Then you say a puppy cut.

We're like, you just, like I said, all kinds of things. You don't know what you're talking about, but, so I'm a technician groomer. I'm a very practical person. A half an inch every month is, you can go swimming, you can do anything you want, and a half an inch is not a lot of hair, but at a half an. Your dog can go swimming and go play ball and go play with your kids and play with her dogs.

And I am not a big fan of brushing. I have a Sarah poodle and she hates to be brushed. And guess what? I don't like to brush her either. So I would [00:38:00] rather just keep her short and maintained and if she gets longer, , and that would be like a five ace or an inch cut. I will get her a bath, a blow dry every two weeks.

And that is, again, to set those roots. I don't wanna brush her. And I think that's where you guys have to decide too. Do I wanna do any home maintenance? Am I honestly gonna do that home maintenance, or do I wanna have the groomer? I, when I had my shop, we had lots of doodle owners, great doodle owners that would come in every week because their dog did like to go in the ocean.

And guess what? If you have hair and you go in the ocean, what does your hair. Fris right up. And so they would come in, they would come in every Monday morning and their doggie would get their blowouts and then they could be clean all week and then they got to be wild all weekend. And it was a great way of maintaining it.

But I like to see, I think a doodle looks really nice at about five a of a coat. And again, things like teddy bear cuts every. Groomer has an a different interpretation. That doesn't mean anything, right? We vaguely know what it means. Okay. We [00:39:00] know that means you want it fluffy, but not super fluffy.

But again, when we think teddy bear, we think fluffy and round somewhere. It's round. So if you ask me, This is like a little confessional here. I used to make up names of haircuts because then I got to do whatever I wanted. I'd be like, oh, you want the Benji cut? They're like, yeah, Benji. Cut . Yeah, I've heard of the Benji cut and we hear all kinds of crazy stuff.

I had a lady tell me she wanted her doodles look like a little Dutch boy. And I we get all kinds and a lot of times you guys, did you bring in the overalls or I was like, then you have to play detective. And I don't think you guys realize how, and it is tough because like with a Shitzu, I can give you a menu of options, but with doodles there is no, your dog is unique.

I can't even if you have a litter, We don't, they're probably not gonna look completely similar. . So I can't give you what that dog is gonna look like. I'm like, listen, we're gonna find out. I think that's the thing. And again, Take your for it's worth. See, I don't like beards. I'll tell you why.

Cause it just gets nasty everywhere. But I like short ears. I either like [00:40:00] shaved ears or I like them. To the chinle. I think it looks very puppyish. I think it's 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: adorable. I think that's the request I do for mine. Yes. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Yes. I like that. I like that little thing. I like less of a, I don't the stop, which is here.

I like that to be very rounded and round into the skull. I like that. Look at it very like what I would consider a teddy. because I'm a practical human being. I like the legs a little bit shorter on than the body, which is not the most attractive. But let me tell you, if your dog loves to swim or your dog loves to run through the woods, if you're pulling stuff out, if you're checking for ticks, the last thing I wanna do, I'd rather check through the body cuz the body's the easiest, right? If you can imagine that. But there is things like even the poodle world, people make up they'll say, oh I want a modern, I'm like, what is a modern, I don't know what that means as 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: a standard poodle 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: owner. I don't either. Yes, it's, and it's just and then, or they'll be like, I wanna modified Miami.

I'm like, okay, let me pull out my grammar book. Listen, and just to talk to you guys about that. Like cocker spaniel owners and sh shower owners do the same thing where they'll say they want the breed standard, but they don't because the breed standard is [00:41:00] significantly different than what they actually want.

So a lot of times it's you guys giving us the grace and understanding. It could take us a year to figure out what you want. And we wish we could pull outta your head, but we can't. Yeah, and your dog's hair is gonna keep changing and if you live in a four season area, , we're gonna have to modify it just depending upon your lifestyle.

You guys go away to the beach every weekend. Having that dog be super long. It's not realistic. If you had a friend with platinum blonde hair, she is not in the ocean rolling around the dirt. And if she is s super meticulous with her hair. She spends a lot of money at that salon. Yeah. So I hope that helps a little bit, right? That helps a lot. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Common pet peeve for doodle parents is when the bridge of the nose is shaved. And that's often where we hear the phrase, they poodle my doodle. Our doodles are. Usually at least half poodle . So 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: It's so first things first, actually, I want you guys to know this as groomers.

We also hate that like we will in groups, if we see people [00:42:00] shave the bridge of the nose, we're like, no , we, and it's a very old school tactic that's actually from people that would do pets on 12 week schedules. Because it's basically like doing what's a, you remember baby bangs? Yes. So if you want like the Zoey de Chanel.

That's like when we just trim the corners, cuz that's only gonna last you two weeks. And then you're gonna, you can't see but if proper bangs here, but so when someone shaves the bridge of the nose, think baby bang like that, they're like, I'm gonna let this grow. Or it's their style and their interpretation of that style.

I don't like it. I feel like, so on a poodle it's very flattering because their, yeah, their nose. like a gun. But if you have that wide stop, like a lot of other breeds do, like you have a more boxy skull, it's really unflattering, , . And again, but ready. This is also why we need groomers who have more education and more style.

. And that's the thing you have to understand, is that what they could do with a shihtzu, what they could do with the Yorkie may look really poor on a dog because they don't know. Confirm. And that [00:43:00] could either be a young groomer or an older groomer who's you know what? This is my style. If they don't like it, they can go somewhere else.

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: and you mentioned if somebody wants more low maintenance and they are too busy or their dog doesn't like being brushed, what that ideal schedule would be? What would be the ideal schedule for some of our really committed doodle guardians who are really willing to do some daily brushing all over the coat, but still wanna be on a regular schedule with their groomer?

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: So I will tell you guys this, I personally fullheartedly. Four weeks is the longest. You should go in between seeing a groomer. And I'll tell you why. When a pet comes in every four weeks, it's a part of life. A lot of pets. You have to remember, okay, this is my belief system. Take it for its worth. So if every human year is seven dog years, that means that every eight weeks is one dog year.

So when they come in every four weeks, it is mentally every six months, any of you guys have children. Your child is significantly better at the dentist if he comes twice a year than if you do it once a year. You're also gonna less likely to have [00:44:00] cav. The flea cycle is around 22 to 30 days, depending what you say.

So I don't do flea dogs, a lava don't do flea dogs, but we're gonna catch it. We're gonna say, Hey, I know it's not Monty. He had two fleas. Keep an eye on your yard versus having an entire cycle. Most groomers I know are going down to a four week or less model. They're not going to do six or eight weeks.

There's such a shortage that they'd rather commit to clients and they wanna have a relationship with your. , and that's the best way they can do it. It's less work on them. It's less work on your dog. A great analogy I heard, and I didn't realize I was doing this accidentally, was when I would go to hotel rooms, I would only let them clean on the last day.

So I'd be there for four days and I would be like, oh, they don't need to clean. And then it's four days later. Do you know? They actually hate that because it's no more work. It's more work for them because instead of it being a short, quick thing, they'd have to do a massive, deep. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Oh, I thought I was doing the nice thing,

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: I know, and exactly. And I feel like doodle owners are [00:45:00] like, but I brush him so I can go six weeks. It's no, you can, but guess what? There's gonna be, it's really tough because even if your dog you think is perfect every four weeks. , it takes about four weeks for a pattern to grow out. So we're fixing your dog's confirmation.

There's nothing wrong with that. It just is what it is. Even poodles you confirmation fix. But if you have a big boxy lab chest and then little tiny poodle legs, like we have a lot of work to do there. We gotta make hair where there's no, but there's no leg there. And so when you wait more than four weeks, we lose your dog's pattern.

So if you're the kind of person who's I don't care. My dog doesn't need to have any style, I don't care about, I don't like basically the person who wants their dog. Fall, they could go a little longer. It's not good for their mental health, but we're not creating any kind of pattern. After four weeks.

I have to recreate that pattern. And that's significantly more work. Another great analogy, and I'm sorry for analogies, but this is gonna get to you guys, I promise. Okay. So if you guys have ever been platinum blonde, I was, and it was a mistake, but I was, so [00:46:00] what you do is like when your roots grow out, you have to get them done every two or four weeks, depending upon how fast your hair grows.

So you're like, oh, I'll wait a little bit longer cuz that's a little bit further. I'll get more from my money. But what happens is that your, the heat from your head actually makes the hair die faster. So they have to watch your hair because your hair is going to have different points and it's going to lift in different areas at different times.

When you go more than four weeks, we can't hand you a baby groomer. You need a groomer who has five to 10 years worth of experience because we have to reset that pattern every time. And guess what, with a groomer shortage, That means that you're gonna be paying significantly more. And just remember too, think about what a livable wage is, where you live, is that a hundred grand a year?

Like how much is rent? So rent's two grand. You have to make three to four times that. That's six to $8,000. $8,000 a month is $50 an hour. If we're gonna keep that payroll at 30. That means that your dog is 150 bucks an hour, and if your dog takes for a shave [00:47:00] down two hours and it takes a for a more manicured look, takes three or four.

Think about that. That is at least 300. Right to $600. To be able to pay that groomer just to wait two weeks. Is it worth it? Because again, we have to redefine that entire haircut. You have to look at your dog like you're a brand new dog instead of just going, okay, looks like I created this line.

Looks like I created that line. No. Instead they're like, oh man, what did I do here? I can't see it. It's grown out too. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Oh, that's fascinating. So if someone is trying to grow their doodle coat out longer, but still want to be that unicorn client that comes in maximum amount of space of eight weeks, can they continue keeping that line and still grow out the coat with you by doing Bath of Blowouts?

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: You guys have so many different coat types. Yeah, I can't even answer that because guess what? You have to have a real, you really need a good relationship with your groomer, and that's what [00:48:00] it comes down to. You have to tell them what you want. It's no different than if you have a good hairstyle. She say, this is what I want.

I had a pixie cut, guys, I'm growing up. My pixie cut. I have to have a good relationship. She's gonna help me grow out my hair by still going for regular trims. And I will say this is that eight weeks is too long for a doodle. I don't care if you brush your dog every day if they need to have a, unless if you.

Been trained by a professional rumor, because don't forget too, you are brushing a dirty coat. If you didn't wash your hair and you were just brushing dirt skin cells, slobber, you're just brushing that through your hair. That's not good for you. That's how you create coat breakage. And you guys know if you wanna grow your hair out, you still get trims, right?

And we maintain our own hair at home. We're using hundreds of dollars worth of products and all that. And I'm excited to talk to your exclusive membership more about what products they can use and things like that. So they're getting some juicy insight after this. Thank you. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: We really appreciate it. The Doodle Pro Society is excited to have their time with you.

I'm gonna ask you one more question. Yeah. Just [00:49:00] to close, you mentioned us having strong relationships. Are groomers, and if we wanna do better on our part, here's your chance to tell us what a lot of doodle parents asked, what are we doing that's driving groomers crazy? What can we do better? 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: Unfortunately, there's too many to count, but let's start small , and it's not your fault.

Okay? Yeah. You have to understand is that most groom. , we're under a lot of pressure. A lot of us are having to significantly increase our prices. We don't have help. We can't hire help. So you're like, what can I do? And you have this big, let's say, I know you guys don't consider 50 pounds a big duele, but by the way, OSHA means that we have to have two people to lift the dog.

So it's a lot. Saying puppy cut. Puppy cut is a thing. It's funny. It would be like if I made a doodle to mean something different and you'd be like that's a word. It has a meaning. And one thing when you guys say, poodle my doodle to us, when you say poodle, my doodle, we think you don't have clean face and feet.

You don't want the whole muzzle shaved, right? But here's the thing is that, so in a poodle that [00:50:00] is done with a 10 or 15 reverse, which is to the skin. So even a short muzzle, you really can be poodle your doodle. And I'm gonna be a little trigger warning here. Your dog is part poodle. You know when we shave your dog, you never say, we Labrador your poodle.

Like, why is that not a thing? I would love for you guys to be like, oh, I love the golden, my doodle. There's so different, there's so many haircuts. We wanna know what you want. And it could take a while. It could take a while. And that's where coming in every month, letting us check the coat length, letting us look at how the coat is growing out.

and understanding that your dog's coat is going to change its entire life. If you spay your dog or near your dog later, you're gonna, you could have spay coat come in, you could have thinning of the coat. If you change what food they're on, that could change. There's so many things that a well-trained groomer, and I think that's one thing actually I wanna point out, I dunno if you know this, there is no licensing or standardization of the grooming.

A lot of people are surprised by that. You could go to Walmart, pick up a pair of clippers and start a grooming salon. But [00:51:00] I would say that, and I think a lot of it is just stemming from we were burnt out, we're overwhelmed, and you guys act like it's so easy. It's what? Just do this. We couldn't have done it in the last six months, but you should be able to do it in one hour.

and I think if you guys could be nice to your groomer, tip them really well, most of them are not making as much as you think they would. A lot of them are working 60 to 80 hours a week. A lot of them are actually losing money in their business after Covid. I know a lot of salon owners who are a hair away from it.

And I think what you guys should know too, is that a lot of people, it's not the dogs that we don't wanna groom. It's unrealistic expectations. , and so will you maybe come to your groomer and before you bring in the dogs to first one and say, Hey, can we have a consultation? Can we sit down and make a plan for my dog and figure out what it's gonna be like the rest of his life?

It's a 10 to 15 year commitment. It 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: is. And a relationship that you're 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: building. I think that's one of the major things, is that if you build a relationship with [00:52:00] your groom, You're gonna be so much happier and we want those unicorn client. I listen, I know this is the unicorn client, we're up here, right?

Because you guys wanna know you, you care enough. And I really wanna honor that and I wanna be here to bridge that. Because we're upset, because we know it's gonna be a shock when you guys come to a shop and we're charging two to $500 for a doodle every four weeks. That's gonna be a shock for you.

but if we don't do that, you're gonna be doing it yourself. And that is an option. And I, just be careful. Don't cut an ear off and hair grows back, but that's it. And I would say the biggest thing is when you put your deposit on your puppy, contact a groomer. Make those appointments, make a plan, and understand your groomer is gonna be upset.

And it's not that you're. With you or your dog. A lot of it is that we see so many dogs who owners are not prepared. Again, I want you to imagine you're a mechanic and everyone's owned a Tesla and you're saying, I've always owned Teslas, but now I bought this Ferrari. What am I in store for?

They're a little triggered. Just be like, Hey, listen. It's [00:53:00] all good. Like I'm here to build this relationship with you, and then you're like, oh my God. Thank God you're the best. . 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Thank you for helping us be better doodle parents for the groomers. I really appreciate it. Feels like you pulled the curtain aside and brought us back into the backside of the salon and let us know what it's really like on your side of things.

I really appreci. 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: I wanna thank you guys so much for listening and just know like we're in and all together. We all love the dogs. It's a matter of coming together and bridging this gap. And you know what? It'll all work out. Thank you, river. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: You're 

River Lee- The Savvy Groomer: welcome. 

Corinne Gearhart- The Doodle Pro™: Thanks for joining me on this episode of the Doodle Pro Podcast.

If you enjoyed the show, don't forget to rate and review us wherever you get your podcast. And I invite you to follow me on Instagram at the Doodle Pro for behind the scenes peaks at all of the adorable doodles. I work with Daley.[00:54:00]

Dog's body language is a foreign language to us humans. Are you wondering how fluent you are? Take our free quiz@thedoodlepro.com slash body and find out how fluent you are in reading dogs body language.