The importance of back ups

In the military, they have a saying, “Two is one, one is none.” I scratched my head the first time I heard this, but what it means is that if you have one of an item and it breaks, you have nothing. However, if you have a spare, you are back to having one. What does this have to do with pet grooming? For example, if you are clipping a dog and it kicks the clipper out of your hand, and the clipper hits the floor and is broken, you are out of business unless you have a spare clipper on hand.

For tools you simply must have, it’s best to have more than one backup. I can hear you now, “But that is expensive! I can’t afford to have three clippers.”  If you have no clipper and cannot work until your favorite grooming supply place can send you one, how much work and income have you lost? Worse yet, how expensive is it if one or more customers switch to another groomer because you had to cancel their appointment? So here is a suggestion, buy a new but less expensive clipper than your favorite to keep as a spare. Alternatively, ask your blade sharpener if he has a refurbished set for sale. They make excellent reserves.

More expensive tools can be trickier. I have a high-velocity dryer that costs a lot. I don’t want to spend that much money to keep an extra one, but I did buy an inexpensive one that I keep stored and have been glad to have it when my favorite one must be serviced. The cheaper dryer is not my preferred tool, but it gets the pets dry and keeps my customers happy.

Similarly, keeping replacement parts for repairable tools tucked away is a good idea. For most brands of clippers, this means blade drives and latches. For many dryers and vacuum systems, it means extra brushes (metal bits that are a part of the electrical system.) If you are handy, you can fix many tools yourself if you have the necessary parts tucked away.

Consider having replacement tools and parts stashed as a form of insurance. At some point, the tools you rely on most will fail. If they are crucial to how you do your job, ensure you have an extra on hand to keep you from losing income. Even if the spare is not your favorite brand or style, it can save the day and help you stay productive.


By Daryl Conner, MPS, MCG 

Daryl Conner has been devoted to making dogs and cats more comfortable and beautiful for almost 40 years.  You can find her happily working at FairWinds Grooming Studio with her daughter and infant granddaughter, or typing away at her latest grooming-related article. Daryl was awarded both a Cardinal Crystal Award and Barkleigh Honors Award for journalism.  She shares her meadow-hugged antique Maine farmhouse with her practically perfect husband and too many animals.