Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Molly goes to the poodle parlour

This is Mol last week.  Her paws had started looking like one of those fancy chickens with feathers that grow over its feet.

This is what she looks like now.

She is the dog for me; her combination of melancholy and merriment is spot-on.  In photos however, especially after a haircut, she usually just looks melancholy. 

She, and the young woman groomer, were marvellous.  No muzzle, no trembling, little restraint.  I was astonished that she allowed her to run the clippers all over her face and whiskers without a snap or a  murmur, and even to scissor round her eyes and eyebrows, so now we can look straight into her open face, which is lovely.  Then the girl just perched on the table chatting and passed the clippers all over her back and sides as if she were just stroking her.  The only complaint was when it came to trimming her front paws, which are always a no-go area.  The groomer shrugged and said simply 'Elle est comédienne' - a drama queen.  But she persevered and got the clippers and scissors right between her toes and pads (coussinets!) to get out the knots and other winter dirt and debris.  Now I'm sure she's running more smoothly and comfortably for having unencumbered feet and legs.  We had a wonderful walk at the watermill to reward and celebrate.

I can't believe I spent so long battling to keep her coat under control myself, when there's a professional who can do it so painlessly.  I know it looks a bit severe, and shearing them like sheep isn't what you're supposed to do with cockers, but it's clean and cool and comfortable.  And for half an hour's work, in a spotless premises with two other girls working with her, she charges the princely sum of 15 euros, though I always give her 20 and she puts the extra 5 in a tips pot on the counter 'for the girls'.  How she makes any money I don't know.  Though the preciously coiffed bichon frisés, poodles, shih tzus, yorkies and the like, all going in for shampoos, sets and blow-dries, who look serenely down their retroussé little noses at my agitated ragamuffin, probably bring in a bit more cash.

But it's a tiring business, all the same.


christopher said...

How nice for Mol. Does she mind that she might become a feature on your page? I always hated being shown off at home. I don't know if my mother got that, how I would fail at music lessons because I didn't want to be shown off.

She is a beauty, a comedienne indeed.

Nimble said...

Dog feet are always troublesome. So good to find a calm professional who knows how to get results. I think Mol's lovely trimmed down.

Zhoen said...

Very comforted to be handled with calm assurance, making the process nearly comforting. Our Moby relaxes when held securely.

Lookin' smart, there, Mol.

Zhoen said...

Comfort-ing. Sorry.

Unknown said...

My goodness, that's a contented looking Mol. Relief on her part or a touch of vanity, does it matter?

Lucy said...

Thanks people!

Christopher - well, I try not to exploit her too much, never work with children and animals etc as they tend to scene-steal! She has an odd attitude to having her photo taken, gets rather wound up and barks, whether with pleasure or annoyance I haven't quite worked out...

Nimble - yes, feet and ears with cockers, and her feet are so sensitive, I really desparied of being able to deal with them. She didn't like having them done at the salon, but surrendered! She seemed to be favouring one front foot quite a bit before, and it really seems better now, which is good. Tom always says she looks a poor scalped thing, but I like seeing her looking trimmed.

Z - the confidence is infectious, I find. I'm glad I'm able to stay with her and hold her head, but find I'm much calmer when the groomer is handling it. I think also, though she doesn't normally like anything with a motor too close, the clippers are probably less painful than being pulled with a brush. (I knew you meant 'comforting'!)

Plutarch - well, she does get made much of and told how beautiful she is and so on, so maybe some embryonic notion of vanity does develop! As I say, she seems to move with more comfort, and when the weather warms up she'll be cooler too. She certainly slept well afterwards.

PurestGreen said...

Growing up I had a West Highland Terrier who hated going to the groomers, but loved the attention she always got after she got back, as everyone would bathe her in compliments. I hadn't known a dog could look smug, but she managed it.

Molly is super cute with her haircut.

herhimnbryn said...

Dear Mol,
Looking good Babe.
Love Bryn
PS, You are very brave to let anyone near your paws. I will allow HER to trim my front paws if I get some liver treat after each one, but nothing will induce me to let my back paws be touched.

Roderick Robinson said...

Did you know coussinets beforehand? I fear I am not a dog person but I'd willingly take Mol to be sheared - a whole new vista of vocabulary opens up. The sensitivity of foot echoes my daughter's hugely expensive Cairn but I'd have thought the real no-go areas with Mol would have been the ears. And so the middle-classes (of whom I count myself) find new ways of de-skilling themselves, apart from increasing the word count, that is. WV: INDOG.

leslee said...

Oh, pretty girl! My dogs always hated grooming between the toes - alas for long-haired types.

Lucy said...

Purest Green - yes, and when they're all clean and sleek like that they're so cuddly and easy to fuss.

Bryn - can't imagine you need too much trimming of feet, unless it's toenails. Even that I was good about; my dewclaw was about half-an-inch long! Mol.

BB - no, I didn't know 'coussinets' before I went there, it's a good one I think. Her ears are touchy but she's had so much done to them she's quite stoical now, bless her. INDOG is very fortuitous.

Leslee - nice to see you. She is moving so much better now, so it is worth it.

Rosie said...

very smart

D. Jean Quarles said...

She does look a bit melancholy, but very adorable.