Ok, maybe that's a bit dramatic. But anything that stops me from doing my job...could potentially be disastrous. Well... OK, you've got me there. I don't actually think a person forced to wait a bit longer than expected for their dog to be groomed, or even having to send a dog home without a haircut (or half a haircut) means the end of the world as we know it. However, some clients would act as though it was.
Things just happen sometimes. The most obvious problem is electricity. Sometimes, the city lets us know a few days ahead, and even a timeframe as to when they will be shutting our electric down for a while. That is much more convenient than the severe storms that give no warning. We get a sinking feeling when suddenly the clipper in our hand goes silent, and the only tool we can use is a brush and a scissors. Of course, this sometimes isn't a big help, as good lighting is somewhat vital to how the groom turns out. The electricity can be out for 10 minutes or 3 hours. I've got no control over it, but a pet owner won't be happy if her dog isn't ready to pick up at our pre-arranged time.
One of the more interesting and scary reasons for a break in electrical service was a wildfire in the forested area across the road. The fire, which was easily viewed from the grooming room window, was fast moving. We watched as it climbed up a powerline pole, which of course caused us to lose power. Luckily the Fire Department had it under control fairly quickly, and we didn't have to evacuate. It took the electric company a bit longer to return power. So long in fact I did end up having to send my final groom of the day home unfinished. Thankfully, that owner was very understanding, and came back the next day for the finish.
One morning I had given two baths, when I realized, we were out of hot water. Interestingly enough, dogs don't like cold showers any more than we do, also, cold water just doesn't get things clean. I waited for the repairman to arrive, and sadly, the water heater needed replacing. Of course, the gigantic super industrial hot water heater was not in stock anywhere in town. They informed us that the soonest they could get one to us was the next day. So, I had to call all my grooming clients for the day and give them a choice: cold bath or reschedule. Most of them chose to have their dogs tough it out. It was fine, and they all lived, but those were some of the quickest baths I've ever given. BRRRR.
Today, something new and interesting happened. By interesting, I mean disgusting and really annoying, in case you were wondering. I was bathing the 7th of my 11 dogs for the day, things were going smoothly. As I was waiting for the suds to go down the drain so I could start rinsing, I looked down and saw water coming up the floor drain. Not good. The maintenance man (who saves our bacon daily around that place) was trying to fix it, assuming there was a buildup of hair, and who knows what in there. I walked back to the grooming room and saw this:
I continued grooming dogs, but soon I had to add to my dam: