How is the Credit Crunch affecting you? Well I don't know about anyone else but it's certainly affecting us! Everything has become a lot more expensive over the last 10 months, and our wages have not increased to reflect that, so things are starting to squeeze.
One of the ways we have decided we can save money in the long run is to stop taking Pepsi and Max to the groomers. This costs us £50 (about $100) every 3 months, thats £200 a year. So we have bought a grooming kit complete with trimming shears, scissors, training DVD etc. and the idea is that we learn to do it ourselves! The kit cost £25 which is the price of one dogs professional grooming.
Hubby is dead keen on the idea and has been doing his research on the internet - it's amazing how many dog grooming tutorials you can find on YouTube! He figures it's not too difficult when you get the hang of it.
Today we decided to have our first go at trimming the boys and Pepsi was up first, as we figured he would be easiest and more cooperative (yeah right!). We have set up a table in the garage with some leatherette taped to it to protect the top and stop the dogs slipping.
After combing through Pepsi's fur so it was at least tidy, Hubby started with the shears, set on the largest size of comb, as we didn't know what we'd be like to start with, so didn't want to take too much off at first. Having run through his fur a couple of times,taking about a quarter of an inch off, we got a bit more adventurous and went down to the next size shears. This time the amount of fur falling on the table was decidely more scary! In the end we just concentrated on his back, sides & chest and left his underbelly alone. Then we got cracking with the scissors, trimming his beard and ruff and the hair in front of his eyes, and we also trimmed his feet. Pepsi was so good, he obviously wasn't happy about the process and often tried to get to the furthest corner he could reach, but in the end we got the job done and although it was nowhere near the close clip he usually gets at the groomers it wasn't bad for our first attempt. Hopefully the more we do it the more he will get used to it, we should get better with practice and he should be more relaxed.
Max on the other hand was a completely different ballgame! He has much thicker, stronger fur and is a stubborn little cuss. He wasn't cooperating at all and refused to stand up! So after several minutes of working on his beard, which we managed to comb out, we called it a day, as we were pretty shattered from doing Pepsi anyway. Max is just going to have to wait a little longer until we get ourselves a proper harness arm to clamp to the table. These allow you to keep the dog in a standing position with it's head in the air so you can see what your doing properly. Which helps!