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'Protecting my hands'

Created: 02/07/2010

FOR A long time now I have suffered with sore, dry skin on my hands from grooming. For a large part of the day they are either in contact with detergent or getting a ‘roasting’ under a hot hair dryer. The busier I am, the more the problem is exacerbated. I have a friend who gave up professional grooming as her hands got to the stage where they were so sore and the skin so damaged that she found it painful to hold scissors or clippers. As well as constant moisturizing I have tried everything. It would seem that the ideal solution would be to wear vinyl or PVC gloves when bathing a dog but I find these extremely difficult to work in as they significantly reduce the sense of touch, making it almost impossible to feel whether the shampoo has all been rinsed out, how dry the coat is etc. They also prevent the air from circulating so I find my hands get very sweaty inside the gloves when I am drying a dog. I have, however, finally discovered a miracle solution. I bought a pair of 2mm neoprene diving gloves and chopped off the finger tips. While they don’t prevent my hands from getting wet they largely prevent the shampoo being in constant contact with my skin. I then leave them on to dry the dog as they act as a moisture-filled shield against the hot air of the dryers. Because the gloves are fingerless I don’t have any issues about not being able to touch or feel the coat. My hands have improved beyond recognition since I have started using the gloves. I know dry hands can be a real problem for the professional groomer so I am keen to share my tip with other groomers. I bought mine on eBay for £16 – money very well spent to my mind! Hannah Rollason

Sassyatmuckys, 03/12/2012

Totally agree with all the comments re Shampoo I've been grooming 19yrs and some of the shampoos I've used over the yrs ..... Well less said the better !! This led me to get together with an aromatherapist and develop over the last 7yrs an organic solid shampoo range which contain ingredients like home grown lavender using NO pesticides and containing things like Shea butter and honey because their solid we have no waste and tailor each 1 to suit the dogs skin and coat fantastic !! Everyone's happy and girls their Not expensive we also have an organic range to compliment them too packed full of goodies especially the peppermint coat polish which I put on my hands before I walk out the salon door at night

tidypaws, 08/01/2012

hi agree with you groomer, i have for the parst 8 year been dog grooming and have that problem to with my hand and have found the oster dog shampoo to be the best shampoo to use to wash dog in. seconed best shampoos are the purl dog shampoo and the plush puppy dog shampoo this are shampoo thay sale here in joburg south africa

mary, 11/09/2010

I have to agree, I have also been over 40 years a dog groomer, and I have never suffered such severe problems. As I also suffer from psoriasis, so have to be carefull what i use on my skin anyway. I also take the view if something did this to my hands it cant be doing the dogs any good either, even though they are not getting the same doses, with continued use, it must also be damaging to their skin and coat condition. I no longer do as many dogs as I once did, but I always use a good quality products, and use a very good hand cream while working, morning and evening I also use E45 cream, but no amount of creams will make a difference if you are allegic to a particular ingredient in your products, check the inredients, consult your doctor too from the sound of your skin.
I never wear gloves, and thouh i could perhaps wish my skin were better, in my case that is now down to age!

TheOldDogListener, 25/08/2010

Treating the symptoms whilst not addressing the cause, won't solve the problem.

You really need to look at the shampoos you are using.
I've been grooming now for over 40 years, and found many brands of shampoo's caused this problem. Infact a friend of mine had really bad hands, with cracked skin and red painful swollen palms. So much so that she'd asked me in to give her a hand bathing for her.
Within days my hands were starting to show the same problems.
We tracked it down to her main shampoo that she used on every dog.
She stopped using it, and 20 years of painful hands disapeared.

Whilst you may think you cannot afford the dearer or natural brands, in the long run you will find them far cheaper, and obviously far better,
not only for your hands, but it will speed up your grooming, because the coat is so much better and quicker to clip or scissor
and you'll also find your Clients will notice the difference in how their dog's look, and that look lasts. You'll also find your business will improve and be enhanced by the quality of the shampoo you use.

Try it, you be a happier Groomer, looking forward to work each day, rather than dreading it.

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