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Foundation Skill Review: Bathing & Drying a Young Show Poodle

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Video DescriptionAbout Suesan Watson


24 minutes, 35 seconds



Every high quality pet stylist knows that the foundation of every great groom stems from the perfect bath and blow out. These two core skills will make or break the finished haircut.

Suesan Watson presents a solid lesson on these foundation skills using a young Poodle destined for the AKC conformational show ring. Her mission is to preserve the coat while getting the dog super clean. She discusses what to look for in product selection. Sue also demonstrates techniques to get the dog squeaky clean and blown out to perfection.

We cannot stress enough how important the prep work is in the grooming process. All of our Training Partners at Learn2GroomDogs agree, you need to perfect the bath and blow-out if you want to:

  • do well in the competition area.
  • successfully passing certification testing.
  • keep clients returning to your salon for their grooming needs.This is a super lesson to review if you, or your fellow team members, are weak in this area. Sue focuses on perfecting the bathing and drying foundation skills so every pet can leave your shop looking fabulous.

    In this video you will learn:

  • why it is beneficial to let the shampoo sit for a moment.
  • how often you should be bathing a dog.
  • what the determining factors are when choosing a shampoo.
  • why you handle a puppy coat differently than an adult coat.
  • why it’s important to dry from the skin out.

Suesan Watson

Certifications: CMG

Suesan is a third generation pet stylist whose dynamic career stretches over 40 years. A “Certified Master Groomer”, she owns a successful mobile grooming business, serving the Chicago/Northwest Suburban area. Sue is proud to be part of Wahl’s “Extreme Team” and is approved by the “United Show Managers’ Alliance” as a “Sanctioned Judge”.

She began grooming competitively in 1995, and has received many class and group placings. Sue is a winner of the “Wahl 2003 Groomer of the Year” award, and only recipient of three consecutive “Cardinal Crystal Grooming Achievement Awards for American Groomer of the Year”. In addition, Suesan has been nominated multiple times for “Cardinal Grooming Contest Judge of the Year”, and Cardinal “Congeniality” awards.

Making “Groom Team USA” in 2000, Suesan was in the top five positions for five years in a row, before retiring from competing to become a judge in 2005. Her 2004 placings garnered her the honor of competing with the “Groom Team USA Travel Team” in France, in 2005; with the USA team placing second, only one point behind France. Sue also won “Best Clipping” recognition with her Mini-Poodle in the “individual open class”, at the same competition.

Her keen eye for dogs, understanding of the “standards” and knowledge of grooming techniques, coupled with her pleasant demeanor, has made Sue a sought after competition judge and speaker, both in the United States and abroad. And with a natural ability to communicate grooming techniques to others in an understanding and often-humorous way, she regularly draws crowds at her seminars and grooming demonstrations around the country. Sue also does private hands-on seminars with individuals and smaller shop groups.


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