Return on Investment

“A penny saved is a penny earned.”

– Ben Franklin?

Yesterday’s throwback post about ‘ol CJ brought back one memory I didn’t mention: CJ was the first dog I owned that required regular trips to the groomer. At first, this was no big deal, just shell out $35 dollars every few months. Eventually, though, I grew weary of this expense and did some math.

While I was a total flop at Algebra II, I was pretty good at other math and this equation wasn’t so hard.  If I bought my own clippers and did the job myself, I’d eventually save money. On my next trip to Wal-Mart, I looked at the cost of some dog clippers. Turns out, like a lot of things, there was an expensive option, a cheap option and an option in the middle. The middle option was about $40, which told me I’d recoup my investment if I could shave the dog just twice. Sold.

Photo Credit: beds for dog & cat Flickr via Compfight cc

CJ After My Handiwork Photo Credit: beds for dog & cat Flickr via Compfight cc

I think there was an instructional DVD included in the clipper kit, but how hard could it be? I didn’t watch the video, but one might argue I should have. I think that first cut took two hours, and I worked up quite the sweat in the garage. CJ looked like one of those candidates in the World’s Ugliest Dog contest, but I didn’t care. After all, we weren’t going to enter the Westminster Dog show, and more importantly, I had saved $35. One down and at least one to go.

I continued to give CJ haircuts. After that first cut, he’d only give me about an hour before his patience ran out, and I’d have to quit. We’d occasionally take him to the professionals, just to make him presentable again. Plus, there were certain areas that just needed a professional touch, after all. When CJ died, I hung up my clippers.

Today, the remaining two dogs in the house have grooming appointments.  While I’m not ready to dust off the clippers, I did some math again. The groomer near our house, which is in a pretty rural area, stays booked up. When my wife called to make appointments a couple of weeks ago, today was the first opening.  The owner has at least five groomers going full throttle all day. I know what they charge for our dogs, and they’re the least expensive due to their size. Consider if they only groomed small dogs and did one per hour, the math would look like this:

(5 groomers) x ($ per dog) x (hours per day)


(5 groomers) x ( hourly pay) x (hours per day)

= a lot of money for the owner

Maybe my next investment should be in a start-up. How does Greg’s Great Grooming sound?

Thanks for reading.


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