Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Why Pay? Pet Grooming

This is Reagan, our Scottish Terrier:
He’s such a good boy!  He’s a cuddly dog, but he sure gets stinky!
 
Before my “Frugal Awakening,” I happily (and blindly) took him to the Pet Groomer every two months for a wash and a trim.  At the fancy groomer, I would pay $75.  Then, I thought that was a bit too much, so I started taking him to the PetSmart Groomery to pay $55.  Better, but then I started thinking about how much this dog’s fur was costing me.  I was spending more on him than on my own hair! 
 
So, after some evaluation, I decided that Reagan could go Twice a Year for a haircut and I would bathe him in between.  Back to the PetSmart I went to pick up special  “Just for Dogs” shampoo with a hefty price tag attached and the bath regimen began.

 
I noticed that many times after I gave him a bath with this “Just for Dogs” shampoo, Reagan was itchy and he still smelled like a dog.  Then, one day when I ran out of his special shampoo, I tried my son’s baby shampoo.  Sure, why not?  If it’s gentle enough for my baby, why shouldn’t it be gentle enough for my fur baby?  Well, it works like a charm! Reagan comes out fluffy, not itchy, and he smells like Lavender Nite Time Baby Shampoo.  Perfect for cuddling!  Observe here, as he expertly dries himself off:
 
After his bath, my husband brushes his teeth with the rubber toothbrush for dogs and he cleans out his ears with ear wipes.  This is something we always had to do after his regular grooming appointments anyway because they always seemed to get water in his ears, resulting in many ear infections and consequently, expensive trips to the vet. 

As for his toenails, taking him for the occasional extra long walk on a sidewalk or paved road usually shaves them right down.  You could also pick up a cheap toenail trimmer at the pet supply store – just be careful to not cut them too close.

Reagan gets a good brushing (especially the beard) to remove excess fur about every two weeks as well.  Here’s the shiny, clean result:

 
I think that home grooming has also made the process a bit less traumatic for Reagan, too.  No strangers and loud cage dryers to deal with.  He actually wants to get in the bathtub (no kidding) because he knows that when it’s over he gets lots of treats!  Good Dog!

 
The Fake-It Yourself Breakdown:

One Year’s Worth of Monthly Baths for Dog ($2.00 for Lavender Baby Shampoo from Aldi x 3)
Twice a Year Trim at Pet Groomer ($55 x 2)
 
Total Fake-It Cost $116.00
 
One Year’s Worth of Bi-Monthly Baths/Grooming for Dog,  ($55 x 6)

Total Fake-It Yourself Savings $214.00

27 comments:

  1. This is great bonding time with your cute doggie. I even purchased a grooming shave set at the pet store. I would ALSO use the baby or kids shampoo from Suave for a fun change, especially since it is tear free.
    Thank you for sharing. Love the happy dog.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your scottie is So cute! I have 2, Drake and Delaney! Gotta love scotties!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love how you break down the prices. Reagan is just adorable. Mary Engelbreight has tons of drawings of Scottie Dogs. Did you know that Franklin Delano Roosevelt had one too? There is a statue of him, somewhere in DC, and he has a statue of the dog next to him. We ended up shaving our cat, ourselves, for the summer. We need a better shaver though. She is part Mainecoon and has tons of hair. She is much happier now and think how lovely her hair will be when it grows out. :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. i have two morkiepoos and we have never taken them in for a grooming. we do it all ourselves! for nail clipping, we just use our own human nail clippers, which as long as you know WHERE to clip, work just fine.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I am a professional groomer & try to live a frugal life. Anyway I have some money saving tips for grooming also. Make your own ear cleaning solution, I make & use it in my shop. 2 parts water, 1 part rubbing alcohol, 1 part white vinegar. Just put a little on a cotton ball, squeeze out any excess & wipe the inside of the ears. For those of you that clip your dogs nails yourself, if you accidentally clip to close & make a nail bleed just grab some flour. Have your flour on hand & ready when you are clipping the nails if they bleed lick your finger, dip it in the flour & push the flour up in the nail where it is bleeding. Hope these tips help, napping grooming.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Your dog is adorable :) I am a dog bather at a salon and I love these tips! A few suggestions though:

    There are dog shampoos specifically for itchy skin. They can have a hefty price tag, though.

    When you bathe your dog, make sure you rinse really well. I can't tell you how many dogs come into the salon with SOAP on their skin because their owners tried to do it at home and didn't rinse well! Your dog might have been itchy because some of those dog shampoos don't rinse out well.

    If you have trouble clipping your dog's nails, you can go into a Petco and have them clipped for $10. No bath required! You can also have them "buffed" for a little more. Nails are very sharp when they are freshly cut, the buffing makes them smooth and allows the groomer to get the nails shorter, because the buffer takes off small layers at a time. Also, If you have a dog with really long nails, I suggest you have a professional trim them for you. Then trim them yourself a few weeks later. It will be easier to cut shorter nails.

    Your dog should not have water in his ears after leaving the groomer! That is horrible! Ear cleaning is usually part of a bath, and should be done at the end of the service to ensure that there is no water in the ears. I can't believe you had to go home and do this yourself! It should be part of the service you PAID for!

    Hope that helps. Happy Grooming!

    ReplyDelete
  7. As a professional groomer I just wanted to say that you really should only use dog shampoos as their skin is more delicate than human's skin due to the Ph levels. There are tons of dog shampoos out that that smell nice and won't make your dog itchy. Also, he might have been itchy because of shampoo residue left on him. Be sure to rinse for at least 5 minutes to get it out. To get more money from shampoo purchases, you can dilute the shampoo. Most bottles won't tell you this. Diluting the shampoo makes it last longer and rinses off a lot easier. Get a shampoo mixing bottle (or any water bottle) for diluting.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I have always groomed my dogs at home...I also used to be a groomer LOL The shampoo I use on my dogs now, is Johnson's oatmeal baby wash. Helps with dogs itchies and really smells good! Also helps to not dry out their skin. Gotta love your dogs! <3

    ReplyDelete
  9. What a great post! Your Scottie is adorable; I loved the drying off photos. :) Thanks for all the money-saving tips. My husband takes care of bathing our Westie and trimming his nails, but I wish I could drum up the nerve to learn to trim his coat myself. Grooming fees really add up.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I cut my dog's fur with the Flowbee and it works perfect,you can find them on e bay and they even have a attachment you can buy for just dogs! No more trips to the groomer and my dog loves to get her hair cut now who knew!! Saves me a lot of money on groomers!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What type of dog do you have? would the Flowbee work on a Maltese?

      Delete
    2. What kind of attachment and where do you get it. I have a Lasha Apso and Maltese/Shi Tsu mix. I try so hard to do them myself (social security you know) and they look a MESS. I would appreciate some hints. Thanks, Gail, newbie here.

      Delete
  11. I love the dog treats and using the baby shampoo for baths. I like the lavender sent because it is calming to them. My old Silky has very easily irritated skin so I give her an oatmeal and milk bath once a month. She loves it and it soothes her skin. I have 5 dogs and they keep me busy so I appreciate all good tips. Thankyou-Sherry

    ReplyDelete
  12. I have a scottie too, named Buster. I quit taking him to the groomer except for about twice a year, like you. I am scared to trim his toenails. I cut him and my hubby bathes him. I found that brushing him about 2-3 times a month helps with any itching due to loose hair. I use a dog shampoo on him and he is so happy after his bath he runs for his toys! And he is 10 yrs old too! Thanks for your tips!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Just found your wonderful site! Thanks for the shampoo tips. Another way to save money on nail trimming is to ask the vet to clip nails when the pup is taken to the vet for its annual examination. Usually my vet will clip nails for free when it's with the exam.

    Jules

    ReplyDelete
  14. I have 2 scotties! I groom one myself. She doesnt have a lot of hair... food allergies. And the other we get him groomed. :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. You obviously have a serious scottie (and westie, us!) following. My little guy is due and I am going to see if I can bathe him...I would say that if you are going to do this, get one of those removable/massaging shower heads so you can directly spray the pooch! Thanks for all your tips!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Of course, a comment from ANOTHER pro groomer...here is the top secret, very expensive, "special" skunk shampoo used in My shop, 1/4 cup hydrogen peroxide 1/4 cup baking soda 1 Tablespoon Blue Dawn dish soap mixed with 1 gallon warm water, lather up Fido, let sit at least 5 min, (longer if possible) KEEP OUT OF EYES! and rinse very very good then follow with a Scope mouthwash rinse, do not rinse with water and dry as usual. This works so well for skunk smell but I will deny I gave away our trade secret. Thank you for all your tips, we use the clorox cleanup and the febreeze all the time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Scope mouthwash rinse?? you don't rinse the mouthwash off after you pour it on? Can you give more detail please?

      Delete
  17. Hi! Just came across your blog! Great ideas!! I love the pictures of Reagan, we also have a Scottish Terrier! Our's is named "Buster" and needless to say, we adore him. He is so sweet and lovable! Happy Savings, Elly Mae from WV

    ReplyDelete
  18. HI! To keep water out of your dogs ears all together use cotton balls. No water logged doggie ears!!

    ReplyDelete
  19. I have 2 Scotties.."Scarlett", black brindle and "Chase", male wheaten.Scarlett is a "hunter" of squirrels and chipmunks and comes in with spiny sweet gum balls stuck in her skirt which requires almost daily removal. Chase is supportive but almost a couch potato. He is also a loyal guardian of the house. I groom them myself and they require every other day brushing and stripping. Toenails I have to use the vet and that is expensive at $15 each! I can't see the "quick" and am afraid to try. Wheaten Scotties seldom smell but Scarlett is really stinky. Could I use baking soda on her fur in between regular baths?

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hi there! I'm a professional groomer too, and thanks for grooming your doggy at home! I love when people take care of their pups!!
    I don't want to be rude, but I have to agree with a few others, please do NOT use 'human' shampoo on your doggy, you can really mess up the ph balance! You can often find really cheap doggy shampoo at Ross / Marshall's or TJ Maxx, just go look every so often, very inexpensive, (ususally I find bottles for around 2-3 bucks) or if you'd like, you can order a gallon and have it last you ages! This one's one of my favourites, http://www.petedge.com/product/Lambert-Kay-Fresh-n-Clean-Oatmeal-n-Baking-Soda-Shampoo-Gallon/44196.uts they have cheaper shampoo's too. 1-3 oz makes a full bottle of diluted shampoo! Great stuff.
    Thanks for posting all the great tips!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Anything they can do, we can do better, right? So we make
    our own dog shampoo
    to wash our Scottie with! I found it on a natural dog care website years ago. Makes Lorna Doone smell like nothing but clean!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Dish soap is great if your pet gets fleas. It isn't harmful to your pets fur or skin and it is so thick- it catches those dang bugs. One year our dog got some and it was awful!

    ReplyDelete
  23. A professional groomer can observe if your pet's skin is too dry or too oily and will be able to make suitable dietary recommendations for your dog's well-being. The skin of your dog will reflect his diet. If this is imbalanced, your dog will have unhealthy skin.

    Dog Training Los Angeles

    ReplyDelete
  24. Grooming your dog will help keep her in a great state of health and increases the bond between you and your dog. It ensures that your pet is free from parasites, and the skin is both healthy and shiny.

    Toronto Dog Groomer

    ReplyDelete

Compliments and Frugal Tips Only, Please!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...