Today I had a minor situation that I needed to figure out how to handle.
It was not a hard decision for me, but everyone did not agree with my way of thinking.
So, I thought that I would ask my fellow groomers...What would you do?
I had one of my regular Standard Poodle customers come in today.
When she arrived, she had on a really nice, new fleece dog coat.
I was still finishing my first dog of the day so we put her in a kennel to wait for me to shave her face and feet before being bathed.
She was not in the kennel very long, but when I took her out I immediately noticed that she had chewed on her coat.
She did not just chew it a little, she chewed it a lot!
When I took the coat off of her, I felt it to see if it was wet from recent chewing, or dry, and maybe the chew spot had already been there.
It was slightly damp.
She had definitely chewed it recently.
Crap, crap, crap.
Sometimes I take sweaters off as soon as the dogs come in, sometimes I don't.
I didn't this time, because I knew that I would be getting her back out shortly.
I have also never had a dog chew on their sweater while it was still on them before.
It just never crossed my mind that her coat would get damaged while she was still wearing it.
All of that being said, I am still responsible for the dog and the dogs belongings while they are in my care.
There were three possibilities....
✓ One, the hole was already in the sweater when the dog came in. (although I did not notice it when she came in)
✓ Two, she chewed it in the car on the way to be groomed, where as it would not be my fault.
✓ Three, she chewed it while waiting in her kennel, because I didn't take it off right away when she came in. (my fault)
The coat could be easily sewed and repaired, but would no longer look new.
It was also still useable.
Even so, the coat was in my care, and I felt responsible.
The coat should go out of my shop the same way it came into my shop.
Okay, so I watch too many court shows. ☺
So, what did I do?
Even though she could still wear the coat...
Even though you couldn't even see the chewed spot from the other side...
I told my husband to ask the owner if the chew spot was already there.
If she said 'no', then I told him to tell her that we would replace the coat.
I felt very strongly that that was the right thing to do.
The owner was very understanding and laughed it off.
She said that she would think about the replacement, but that she thought the coat was still fine.
I still feel bad that it happened, but I am very glad that it was settled smoothly, with no ill feelings.
Happy Grooming, MFF