Forgive me blog readers, for I have sinned. It has been four months since my last blog-session. Where did the time go? I am so ashamed! I am staying so busy grooming there is little time to write about it!
My days consist of oodles of doodles and havanese in every color; morkies of every size and shape; cavachons, puggles, shih-poos (excuse me) and the occasional schnauzer, cocker and poodle. Goldens, goldens and more goldens…And there are the rescues, mostly large dogs in black or brown, double-coated wrappers, usually very sweet and grateful to have been saved from the premature trip to the big doghouse in the sky. And the divas, there are many. The little princesses; yorkies, maltese, chihuahuas, and chi-poos (excuse me) whose tiny paws never touch the ground, that when entering the spa appear to be Velcro'd to the parent. And of course, that parent would be mortified and can never know that it is her little diva that provides us a perfect little nugget, the golden egg, left in her suite, as if we were given a precious brown gemstone. This unspeakable act, of course, stays between the pet and groomer. It is the diva's dirty little secret!
We have been open for nearly five months now, and it is encouraging to see many of our clients coming through for their third and fourth visit. Especially rewarding are the clients that first entered the spa for an initial consultation or first appointment, still reeling from a bad grooming experience, clutching the pet to their person, apprehensive, thinking grooming is a necessary evil, and now on the second and subsequent visits enter the spa confident and calm, making the entire grooming session more enjoyable for the pet and groomer.
I would have to say that as a group of pet parents, those that have havanese are the most conscientious when it comes to grooming. Most of our havanese visit us every two to three weeks and are some of the most enjoyable pets to groom. I love being back at it. I look forward to getting up each morning, donning my anti-hair suit and driving to the spa. In fact, there have been numerous occasions over the last months that I have been moved to tears while grooming. Really. There is a wave of joy and peace, of pure satisfaction, that wells through me. After all these years, I am so grateful to be working hands-on with the pets, to be providing a meaningful service that provides comfort to the pet while enhancing their health, and selfishly to have an outlet for my own artistic expression.
Even though we have been open since January 12th, our Grand Opening Celebration originally set for March was moved back twice to April 25th. Not only were we challenged to find a Sunday that did not create conflict with other obligations, we were also agonizing over our price list. Our goal is to offer a premium service at a fair and reasonable price.It was truly agonizing. We finished it up and sent it off to be printed, receiving the brochures the day before the Grand Opening.
We mailed 300 invitations, including 30 or so veterinarians in our area, and sent out press releases to all the local newspapers and TV stations. At the end of the day, I believe we had 100 people come through, in spite of the thunderstorms and occasional torrential downpours. Our Maineville Mayor, Dale Marconet and his beloved pomeranian Princess were our special guests and we were honored to have them join in on the festivities. It was amazing to me how many of our current clients attended and brought other pet owning friends. We booked a half dozen or so new clients that day.
Refreshments were set up in the Zen Zone and free prizes (dog food or treats from The Barkery) were awarded to a lucky winner every 30 minutes. We wanted the open house to serve as an opportunity to educate the pet parents about the grooming procedures too. So I put together story boards about each of the grooming procedures and our spa treatments, laminated them and Pam posted them, along with a display of companion tools and products throughout the spa and grooming rooms. Oh, and I must say thank you to Rachael, (Pam’s daughter) for allowing us to borrow from her extensive collection of stuffed animals to complete our displays. Many guests spent the time to read the boards and then ask questions. I feel as though the day was very successful.
I wanted to share some photos with you from the Grand Opening. It is with great satisfaction that the Grand Opening is behind us as we look forward to growing our business one happy customer and one fortunate dog at a time. Thanks for visiting! Karla
The building really did look like the proverbial pig wearing lipstick, but the shutters, banners and awning, along with the benches and planters, softened the front, creating a bit of an upscale look. To the right of the building we put down sod and added a poopy-pick up bag dispenser and receptacle to help people remember to walk their pets before entering. That was not enough, so we also posted a sign next to the front door. It amazes me how many people do not allow their pets to relieve themselves before putting them in the car and taking them to be groomed.
It was a great day...I love this This Grooming Life!