It’s never the horses that are a problem - always the owners ! *rant*

spotty_pony

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Just a little rant from today…

Went to clip a horse for somebody. Got a message when I was on the way (it was a 50 minute journey) to say she was running late so don’t rush - she would probably get there the same time as me and anyway she needed to get her in!

I got there and she had managed to get her in, but horse still had wet mud on bottom of legs and clumps of mud on face and body. Started clipping and had to ask for her to remove the mud so I could continue to which she flicked a dandy brush over and said ‘that ok?’
The horse also had quite a few patches of dried sweat on her which made clipping very difficult and my blades kept pulling the hair. She was very greasy and my clippers were struggling.. on the plus side, the horses was very well behaved considering. Owner disappeared off to muck out and poo pick whilst I was clipping and spent most of her time on her phone when she was there. Horse was getting a bit fidgety and I had to ask her to hold her. She didn’t seem to want to get hair on her. 🤷🏻‍♀️ This took me about 2 hours to do as it was a full clip with legs and I was very patient despite the state of the pony. I asked her three times at the end if she was happy and she said she was, then took horse back to her stable whilst I waited for her to pay me. Ten minutes later I went to find her as I needed to get going and she still hasn’t reappeared. Found her and friend gossiping in stable and said I needed to get off and she said she would be 2 minutes.

We went to the car park and she paid me, I thanked her and she said ‘thanks, bye’ and walked off. That was it which I thought was a bit off - I got in my car to go and was just leaving when a lady came up to me and said ‘****** is not happy with the clip, are you going to come back in?’ I replied that I had asked her if she was happy and she has said she was. She said she had changed her mind and the clip wasn’t as she wanted it. I explained that the horse was very greasy and sweaty so it was a struggle to get a perfect finish. She carried on saying she wasn’t happy - I said well if she’s not happy then she needs to talk to me herself to which I was accused of being rude?!

I left at this point; was less than a mile down the road when I had a text from the owner saying she wasn’t happy abd I had been rude to her mother (that must have been who the lady at the gate was then, I just thought she was another livery! To which I did give her a few hints and tips on why it wasn’t the best of clips, whilst remaining professional … to which she blocked me!

to add this owner wasn’t a child - she was a young woman in her 20s and perfectly able to communicate with me herself If she wasn’t happy.

anyway rant over! I am hoping this isn’t the normal! What happened to giving the horse a bath or at the least a very good groom beforehand?!!!
 

spotty_pony

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How infuriating for you! At least you were able to keep a civil tongue in your head.
I'm sure you will be fully booked in future, should this person ever wish to use your services in future . . .
I did it short notice as well, she chose the day and the time. She didn’t state she wanted legs doing as well - for which there is an extra charge usually. But I let that go as to be fair, I didn’t check so my fault really. I doubt she will be asking for me again! I thought I held it together very well. I just don’t think they liked the answers!
 

spotty_pony

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Quite frankly I’d have turned around and gone home!
I think I am going to have to start doing this. I have noticed some people charge a ‘dirty horse fee’. But how you can make them pay it I don’t know. Glad I didn’t have anything else on after as it took me about an hour longer than it should have done.
 

bouncing_ball

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I think I am going to have to start doing this. I have noticed some people charge a ‘dirty horse fee’. But how you can make them pay it I don’t know. Glad I didn’t have anything else on after as it took me about an hour longer than it should have done.
If you are good at clipping and advertising locally you should have choice of custom. I’d state terms are must be on time and clean and dry. Dirty horses 30% surcharge as takes longer and blunts blades. Terms accepted on booking.

If horse is dirty you state charge applies upfront and is accepted or you walk.
 

Starzaan

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I would have left!
I used to charge a dirty horse fee. If I got there and the horse was wet, muddy, sweaty, or greasy, or clearly hadn’t been bathed, I would simply tell the owner that I would be happy to clip, but would be adding £25 to the bill to go towards new blades which would be needed after clipping a dirty coat, and the extra time it would take to try and get a decent finish. If they weren’t happy to pay it, I suggested a different time and date so they could arrange to have the horse clean for when I got there, or simply left.
People suck.
 

Ratface

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And furthermore . . . any professional attending my horse has a dry, well-groomed, feet picked out, orifices wet-wiped, haynet if appropriate, polite animal to deal with. I also remain in attendance throughout, other than to make/provide hot/cold drinks, biscuits, ensure horse is cooperative, pay cash immediately, make the next appointment and hold the yard gate open as they leave operative!
 

bouncing_ball

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And furthermore . . . any professional attending my horse has a dry, well-groomed, feet picked out, orifices wet-wiped, haynet if appropriate, polite animal to deal with. I also remain in attendance throughout, other than to make/provide hot/cold drinks, biscuits, ensure horse is cooperative, pay cash immediately, make the next appointment and hold the yard gate open as they leave operative!
I do the majority but wet wiping orifices has never occurred to me.
 

meleeka

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They sound like chancers, probably hoping you’d be too embarrassed to argue and give her some of her money back. If she didn’t value your services enough to prepare the horse or even make sure she was available to hold if needed, she probably hoped she’d get it for a knock down price too.

eta - I definitely agree with suggestion of a dirty horse surcharge.
 

spotty_pony

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29 July 2005
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East Midlands
Me too. Do you clip for anybody else on the same yard as her? You're not gonna be at risk of losing clients if she goes bad mouthing you?
I’ve never been there before and to be honest it’s out of my area so it shouldn’t affect me. I am also admin for the biggest equestrian facebook group across the county and have removed her from the group in case she did try bad mouthing me. I’ve clipped loads of horses and had nothing but good reports. There is a very small minority who weren’t happy and these were either the ones with dangerous horses to which I wasn’t prepared to get every piece of hair off from around the sheath and risk my life, and the others were from like today - a not great finish due to the horse being dirty. I’ve clipped for all of the big hunts in the area with no problems.
 

ILuvCowparsely

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5 April 2010
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13,496
Just a little rant from today…

Went to clip a horse for somebody. Got a message when I was on the way (it was a 50 minute journey) to say she was running late so don’t rush - she would probably get there the same time as me and anyway she needed to get her in!

I got there and she had managed to get her in, but horse still had wet mud on bottom of legs and clumps of mud on face and body. Started clipping and had to ask for her to remove the mud so I could continue to which she flicked a dandy brush over and said ‘that ok?’
The horse also had quite a few patches of dried sweat on her which made clipping very difficult and my blades kept pulling the hair. She was very greasy and my clippers were struggling.. on the plus side, the horses was very well behaved considering. Owner disappeared off to muck out and poo pick whilst I was clipping and spent most of her time on her phone when she was there. Horse was getting a bit fidgety and I had to ask her to hold her. She didn’t seem to want to get hair on her. 🤷🏻‍♀️ This took me about 2 hours to do as it was a full clip with legs and I was very patient despite the state of the pony. I asked her three times at the end if she was happy and she said she was, then took horse back to her stable whilst I waited for her to pay me. Ten minutes later I went to find her as I needed to get going and she still hasn’t reappeared. Found her and friend gossiping in stable and said I needed to get off and she said she would be 2 minutes.

We went to the car park and she paid me, I thanked her and she said ‘thanks, bye’ and walked off. That was it which I thought was a bit off - I got in my car to go and was just leaving when a lady came up to me and said ‘****** is not happy with the clip, are you going to come back in?’ I replied that I had asked her if she was happy and she has said she was. She said she had changed her mind and the clip wasn’t as she wanted it. I explained that the horse was very greasy and sweaty so it was a struggle to get a perfect finish. She carried on saying she wasn’t happy - I said well if she’s not happy then she needs to talk to me herself to which I was accused of being rude?!

I left at this point; was less than a mile down the road when I had a text from the owner saying she wasn’t happy abd I had been rude to her mother (that must have been who the lady at the gate was then, I just thought she was another livery! To which I did give her a few hints and tips on why it wasn’t the best of clips, whilst remaining professional … to which she blocked me!

to add this owner wasn’t a child - she was a young woman in her 20s and perfectly able to communicate with me herself If she wasn’t happy.

anyway rant over! I am hoping this isn’t the normal! What happened to giving the horse a bath or at the least a very good groom beforehand?!!!
Personally I would not clip her horse again and I would have charged her more for a dirty horse and time it took.
 

atropa

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26 September 2012
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Wow. Mortifyingly bad behaviour from owner, there really is no excuse for presenting a dirty, mud covered horse to a clipper. If I was you I'd have refused to clip. Sounds like you managed to keep your cool really well. Chalk it up to experience, and never assume anything in future
 

J&S

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17 June 2012
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I have heard of this happening to friends who are professionals. Such bad etiquette and not nice for the horse either.
Do you think, as she was a youngish person, that it was pure ignorance? Obviously the mother did not know how things should be done either.
 

windand rain

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25 November 2012
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8,324
I only have one clipped now but every horse has been bathed wrapped up from nose to tail at least two days before an appointment with a clipper so they are as clean and dry as possible as a livng out pony can be. This year none are clipped. However my farrier prefers me not to wash feet and legs as sticky mud is easier for him to deal with than wet hairy feet. If too muddy I put bandages on. This year non are clipped. I personally think you should put it down to experience and rant away when you feel the need. You have every right to expect the horse to be clean and dry as you are offering a clipping service and it is only good manners for the horse to be prepared for that service. One reason I gave up clipping years ago but more recently because I physically can no longer stand the pain.
 

Annagain

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10 December 2008
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13,718
I'm paranoid about my horses not being clean enough to be clipped so brush them really thoroughly for a few days before then bath them the night before and leave them in, in a clean cooler rug. This year I had a wedding the day before so couldn't bath. I was at the yard at 5am bathing him. By 7, it was obvious he wasn't going to be dry in time for 11 when clipper was coming so I went home, had some breakfast and then went back up at 9.30 with my hair dryer. It worked a treat and C seemed to really enjoy it!
 

spotty_pony

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Location
East Midlands
I'm paranoid about my horses not being clean enough to be clipped so brush them really thoroughly for a few days before then bath them the night before and leave them in, in a clean cooler rug. This year I had a wedding the day before so couldn't bath. I was at the yard at 5am bathing him. By 7, it was obvious he wasn't going to be dry in time for 11 when clipper was coming so I went home, had some breakfast and then went back up at 9.30 with my hair dryer. It worked a treat and C seemed to really enjoy it!
You sound like the dream client!
 
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