You have chosen a groomer and have scheduled your first appointment. What should you expect?
Not just your nerves because you are leaving your puppy or kitty in the hands of a stranger, but your pet’s first trip to the groomer is a new situation for them. You should expect them to be nervous. To help keep your pet calm, you may try to brush him at home in short spurts. Make these small, quick grooming sessions are positive with rewards and treats. If you have a boisterous puppy, take him or her for a long walk before their appointment. If you have a shy kitten, try to bring something that smells like you to help calm her. (Read this post for a walk through the Posh Paws Puppy Experience.)
You might be tempted to linger or arrive before your pet’s appointment is over. I encourage you to not give into this temptation. Your pet will miss you too, so seeing you or hearing your voice may make your pet too excited for your groomer to properly finish his groom.
The first appointment takes some time to help your pet acclimate to the sounds, smells, and equipment they will experience during a grooming session. It takes time for many pets to adjust to having their nails trimmed, their ears cleaned, and their teeth cleaned. Some pets won’t like the sound of the dryer, many pets are not fans of scissors near their face, and some won’t like the tub. It takes time and regular grooming to ease your pet’s fears, so expect a few of the first grooming sessions to take a bit longer.
Be specific and clear about what you expect from your pet’s appointment. If you are not sure, ask your groomer. Groomers have been trained in many different trims for every kind of dog or cat type imaginable. The more open the communication between you and the groomer, the smaller the difference between your expectations and your groomer’s expectations.
If your pet has any health issues, this is the time to mention them. If your puppy nips, let the groomer know. If you know anything that should be disclosed, it is best for your pet and your groomer if you tell them before the appointment.