Artist triumphant in “Chow Time” Challenge {Groomer Has It}

May 18, 2008

I usually don’t react strongly to what’s happening on TV, but I was mortified when Kathleen put a muzzle on Zoro, her Chow Chow, before giving him a bath. How much damage can a dog do when tied up in a washtub? Zoro, who according to the judges had a nice personality, was scared and helpless trying to bat Kathleen away with his front paw. Imagine taking your Chow to Kathleen because she has all this grooming experience, only to later find out she insisted on muzzling your dog because of her “issues.” I hope Kathleen can digest the hunk of humble pie she was served this week.

Chow Chows by nature are one-owner dogs and are very protective. They are are naturally suspicious of strangers, so the groomers’ challenge this week was to remain calm and win over their dogs’ trust. Kathleen, Artist, and Jorge had all been bitten by Chow Chows before. Kathleen and Jorge dealt with this professional shortcoming by not grooming this breed. But Artist said he had to groom 10-12 dogs/cats a day just to pay the bills and to feed him and his son (including “dogs from the pound and three legged cats”). Artist put on his army boots and psyched himself up for the Chow Time Challenge, not even packing a suitcase in case he lost. “Why would I pack if I’m not going home?” he said. Jasper and Artist were selected as the best groomers this week, but it was a confident Artist who prevailed. I thought Jessica deserved to be recognized, but for the fact that she didn’t use her “leg up” prize from her Quick Sniff Challenge win (5 minutes with her Chow’s owner to calm the dog down).

Kathleen and Will ended up at the bottom, and Will was sent home for not grooming the Chow to the breed standards. His dog looked great, but she did not look like a Chow Chow; she looked like “an American Eskimo.” Will made the mistake of thinking that “the haircut varies” and “you pretty much can do whatever you want.”

(Above: American Eskimo dogs)

There were some funny moments, too.

1) Jon and his double entendres: “Kathleen didn’t really know how to use her nuts. Me? I go crazy for nuts all the time.”

2) Poor messenger dog, Nemo, had to watch the groomers bake dog treats in the “only five star dog bakery,” Three Dog Bakery and not be allowed to do a taste test.

3) Jorge’s comment: “How hard can it be to make dog biscuit? A dog eats his own poop, sometimes.”

4) Jessica’s winning dog treat was based on her commitment to her ingredient, cheese.

5) Animal Planet censoring Jessica’s cigarette habit by pix-elating her hand while she was smoking. OK, now the Veterinarian Judge, Karen “Doc” Halligan, had a habit of lifting each Chow Chow’s tail and examining it’s you-know-what. I finally found something worse than second hand smoke. By the way, did you see the look Judge Joey Villani gave her? They can’t stand each other! I’d love to see him pull a Bill O’ Reilly freak out!

Groomer Has It is seeking applications for Season Two. I’m not sure if it’s possible to find another cast as amusing as the current bunch.

PJ

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