Good grooming practices are essential for maintaining health and happiness for you and your dog. This is a forum to exchange tips and advice for proper care of your dog's hygiene needs.

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Mama's Pumpkin- Boy
Barked: Mon Oct 6, '08 7:58am PST 
Dogtopia, a grooming service in Tyson's Corner VA promises their customers, that after a day of grooming services which include: a bath using professional shampoo and conditioners in a hydro surge massaging tub. A full dry and brush out, ears cleaned, nails clipped, and pads trimmed and a BREED STANDARD CLIP. Customers will pick-up a BEAUTIFUL DOG!!!

Well after taking my toy poodle puppy to Dogtopia Tysons Corner, I DID NOT pick-up a BEAUTIFUL DOG!!! I picked up a puppy that I didn’t even recognize. He had been shaved down to the point where I could see his pink skin, his coat was uneven and a patch of hair was missing from his upper right thigh area. When I dropped him off the morning of his appointment, which was Thursday October 2, 2008, my puppy had a full-fluffy puppy-cut coat. I SPECIFICALLY instructed the groomer, Marco to TRIM his coat and keep him in his ORIGINAL puppy cut. Instead, he shaved/clipped all of my puppy’s hair off, clipped it uneven, removed a patch of hair from his thigh area and TOTALLY ruined my puppy’s appearance. I have before and after pictures of this horrific grooming atrocity…and the last time I checked the before pictures shouldn’t look better than the after pictures.

I took my puppy to Dogtopia expecting a “skilled” groomer to groom my puppy in an acceptable manner. I expected Dogtopia to have a certified groomer who was trained for the job at hand and knows what they are doing.

After speaking with the general manager, Joye Novellino she stated that my unfortunate grooming experiences would be a learning experience for the company as well as the groomer. Well, I DON'T appreciate being a "learning"/lab-experiment for a so-called trained professional. My puppy IS NOT a guinea pig. Dogtopia failed to fulfill my needs and failed to provide effective services. She also used the following scenario when attempting to explain the situation, stating that if she goes to get a haircut and the stylist doesn't cut it right or she's not pleased with the outcome, then she would just have to deal with it. Basically telling me to DEAL WITH IT!!!

Well I'm NOT going to deal with it and I want to inform the general public about this extreme display of poor grooming services. I don't want this to happen to anyone else and I don't want another pet owner to go through what I'm currently going through right now. I just want the general public to be aware of the poor quality and unacceptable work of Dogtopia's incapable groomer.

I can forward the before and after pictures by request.


May be a fox
Barked: Mon Oct 6, '08 9:53am PST 
ToeFee, unfortunately, a "puppy cut" to most people means clipped pretty short. He probably thought you wanted it short when you said the word puppy cut.
Though that doesn't excuse it being patchy...
And he should have explained that it would be short.
Instead of assuming you knew this.

To avoid this in the future I would not ask for a puppy cut.
Though it means different things, to different people.

I would specify how long you want her coat to be after the clipping, how you want her head, tail, legs, feet, topknot done.

a #10 is the shortest, # 7 second shortest, #5 third shortest, #4 fourth shortest, and a #3 is a pretty long length, there are also longer combs if you want to keep it longer, I like the 3, 4, and 5 blades.

You could bring in a picture of how you want it to look too, and do some research on different poodle cuts (there are so many)
Jade- Alexandria

Dont mess with- me, I'm- chihuahua!
Barked: Mon Oct 6, '08 10:21am PST 
Guess they weren't perfessional, just in training. NO groomer would just shave a puppy bald for the heck of it!!! Did you talk to the owner or the manager?? Need to notify the owner and put out bad reviews on various websites. Thats about all you can do. The better business breau won't do a thing.


King of- everything
Barked: Mon Oct 6, '08 1:22pm PST 
Ya where I am from everyones "puppy cut" is a shaved short look. In school I learned puppy cut as one length all over so if someone comes to me and says puppy cut I ask what length because puppy cut isnt a specified length. They probably should of asked you alot more questions. But ya that doesnt explain the uneven cut. Id ask them what happened lol?? That does really suck though. Sorry to here you had a bad experience.
Jasmine Lula CGC, TDI

Too Human To Be- A Dog
Barked: Mon Oct 6, '08 5:03pm PST 
This is exactly the reason I hate when someone comes in and tells me they want a "puppy cut" on their dog. A puppy cut is one length all over, that could be short, long.... you need to be specific with the groomer. I always ask how long they want the hair, what they want me to do with the face/head, tail, etc. I never just make up my own puppy cut. So while the groomer was in the wrong let this be a learning experience to you as well. Be sure to tell the groomer next time how much you want taken off and/or left on, what you want done with the face, tail, etc. Sorry your puppy got a bad cut!! Dont worry though it will grow back.

Tiny Weasel!
Barked: Tue Oct 7, '08 8:37am PST 
I agree that any place that provides doggie services should live up their promises, but I just had a few things to throw out there...

Sometimes a groomer can be forced to shave the dog if the coat is severly matted...even very attentive puppy parents may not realize that the coat is matted. However, in this situation the professional thing to do is to call the dog's owner and let them know that the only way to safely groom the dog is to shave the hair off. And as for the patchiness, sometimes puppies are wiggly... Yes, a good groomer should be able to handle this, but every so often, patchiness happens. Again,the business should have told you why there was patchiness....so it's not a mystery or a surprise to you.

Sorry your pup got a bad haircut...but it'll grow back smile

I'm Bringin'- Sexy Back
Barked: Tue Oct 7, '08 12:40pm PST 
I am soooooo sorry for what happened to your puppy.When you do a puppy cut your hair should be about an inch long.When doing the puppy cut it requires a clean face and clean feet.The dog is scissored one length all over.It's different from the summer clip the summer clip is very short,While the hair is just scissored off on the puppy clip. Just scissore enough to even the hair.This is from my grooming school book.

I would tell that lady that you want your money back.I would never go there and tell every one you can.if they are claiming that they are professional groomers then you should have a perfessional product in the end.I'm sorry if a salon did a hair cut i didn't like for one they would be fixing for free and two i wouldn't go there anymore.This is why i starting grooming my own dogs.

Can i also see the photoshrug
♥Drea- mer♥

Show dog in- training
Barked: Tue Oct 7, '08 4:41pm PST 
I'm really sorry that you got a bad haircut! but I did want to say that he patch of hair that is missing that you mentioned may be from his rabies vaccine. A lot of poodles tend to have skin reactions to a particular brand of rabies vaccines (fort dodge if anyone is wondering) and get a little round bald spot right where the vaccine was given. Its called a rabies vasculitis.

Mommy's little- Piggy!
Barked: Tue Oct 7, '08 6:24pm PST 
i also had a bad experience with groomer last time...

my maci's hair was long on her ears, when she came out about half of one ear was chopped off shorter than the other half of that same ear.... so I had to end up chopping off length up to the ear flap on both ears to make it look right.....

so i vowed then to do my own dogs from now on. i recently just purchased a clipper kit, nail grinder, ear hair puller and powder, a new bottle of shampoo and conditioner

basically all of it costed me about 140 bucks with shipping, and now since i have 4 pups, just 6 groomings of them total will pay for itself.

im all set, just need a blow dryer and table now and im done.
Miss Lola- Luftnagle

Solid Gold- Dancer
Barked: Tue Oct 7, '08 7:14pm PST 
A few weeks ago, I had to give 2 min poodles there first hair cuts. Clean face and feet, one lenght all over. I think I used a 1/2 guide comb, skimmed the legs, and scissor finished the rest. Not the easiest groom by a long shot. Most pups are not very co-operative. I usually tell owners that its more of a learning experience, and that it might take a few times before it really clicks. Some dogs never enjoy it. I would be really leary of scissoring a first time all over. As to matting, as long as the pup isn't pelted, I will demat, but only once I give the owner a pass on the shave down. The groomer should have assesed the dogs coat condition and gave you a pretty clear picture of what can and could be done.
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