Event Photos

One Proud Mama


There are times when you are impressed with the adult your child became. Right now I am that proud mama. On Saturday, April 26th at the University Of New Hampshire in Durham, my daughter, Jessica Pollard, along with her friend Amanda Kane, shaved their heads as part of a fundraiser for the St. Baldricks Foundation.


In the 1950s, almost all kids diagnosed with cancer died. Today, thanks to organizations such as St. Baldricks and caring individuals, about 85% of kids with common cancers will live. But there is still need for more research if children with other types of cancer are to survive. It is estimated that one in 300 children will develop cancer.


It was the frat boys of Sigma Phi Epsilon who organized this fundraiser. They raised over $11,000.  Hard to call them boys, when they are truly men, 40 of which are bald as well. I imagine each of these men also has a proud mama. Jessica and Amanda alone raised over $3,200.  The local paper covered the event, and you can read the article online.


The inspiration for Jessica’s head shaving is the incredible Miss Sidney Christensen.  Sidney was born with a rare spinal tumor. One of only 12 ever recorded. She had surgery when she was 9 days old to remove it. It was followed shortly by chemotherapy. Doctors did not think she would ever walk, but the incredible Miss Sidney Christensen now runs and dances. You can read more about Sidney on her St. Baldricks Honorary page.  Sidney is recovering from her last surgery and has been pronounced CANCER FREE.


Of course, the head shaving was recorded.

The "Shaving."


Both Amanda and Jessica donated their hair to Children With Hair Loss. They make and provide wigs at no cost to children with cancer.


My hat is off, although Jessica’s hat may be on at the moment, to all the participants.  You all rock!


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Hershey Internet Mingle 2013

Eight years ago, Dawn Omboy had a great idea. How fun would it be to actually meet the people you "talk" to everyday on the Internet. 

Many of us have been friends for so long, yet have no idea what each other looks like. At trade shows, we would sit next to each other or look at the same pair of scissors at one of the booths. But not make a connection.

Dawn approached Sally Liddick about hosting an internet get together the night before the show opened thinking Sally would put it together. Sally was all for it, BUT it was up to Dawn to coordinate it. After the panic subsided, Dawn and her friends pulled it off. It was so successful, that it is now a staple at Groom Expo.

Every year, the Internet Mingle hosts a fundraiser. Thanks to the generosity of vendors such as Espree, Groomers Mall, Davis, PetGroomer.com, Groomers Lounge, Wag-n-Tails, Bardel bows, Barkleigh, Talon Shears, and so many others, they were able to sell raffles tickets for donated products.

This years proceeds will go to the GEAF. The Groomers Emergency Assistance Fund has been set up to help fellow groomers in need. Their mantra is "Groomers Helping Groomers." 

There will be a cash bar and Espree is providing giveaway's to the first 75 people in the door PLUS a free raffle ticket. You can always increase your chances of winning by donating and receiving MORE raffle tickets. The bonus is getting to meet all your interney buddies for a night of fun.

Iinternet Social 2011


Amazing Kids - Kristen Dougherty

I met Kristen Dougherty on November 12, 2012 in Belmar, NJ when a group of twelve well-meaning pet groomers descended into this town devastated by Hurricane Sandy. We were there to distribute much needed pet food and comfort items as well as to clean up muddy, sea-salted soaked local pets.

Most were local groomers, but a couple traveled an hour or two or three to get there, but Kristen and her father; Bob, made the fifteen hour journey from Michigan to help out. That is not a misprint. They traveled fifteen hours as part of a Hurricane Sandy Volunteer Project. We were but one of several stops. It was because of this sixteen years old enthusiasm, dedication, and organizational skills that the twelve of us we were able to clean up sixty-seven pets.

Kristen Belmar NJ
Kristen spent time in six separate towns over the next eight days preparing meals, helping local residents to replace food and clothing as well as gutting out flood damaged homes.

Bob and Kristen Sayreville NJ text
I was not surprised to find out that Kristen has been helping others since she was nine years old through such organizations such as www.girlsontherun.org and www.youthworks.com. In addition, Kristen volunteers as her local humane society.

Girls on the Run 2012 (family) text
I wish this amazing young woman the best in life. For wherever Kristen goes, will be all the better for having her there. 

Belmar NJ Groomathon

On Monday, October 29th at 8PM EDT, Hurricane Sandy slammed into the Jersey shore impacting a region spanning from Virginia to Massachusetts.  It is estimated that the property damage will top $10 billion and loss of business around $30 billion. What those figures really mean is that thousands lost their homes, their belongings, and their mementos. So many are out of work because of devastated businesses.  When someone is concerned about where they are going to live, putting food on the table, paying their bills, and when is the electricity coming back; it is understandably that grooming the family pet is not a priority. Yet, many of these pets are stressed due to their situation and dirty from seawater and mud.

The town of Belmar, New Jersey was hit hard. Their boardwalk was destroyed and the town flooded. Many residents and pets were rescued from second story windows by kayaks and boats. So many homes and businesses were destroyed.

 But on Sunday, November 11th, a group descended onto this little town.  It included groomers from Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut. Seven brought their vans. Most of these groomers were impacted by the storm themselves. Dr. Dave Weiss of Brick Animal Hospital was on hand. Bob Daughtery and his daughter, Kristen, drove 15 hours from Michigan to keep us organized.  In addition to providing clean up for these pets, we provided pet food and other necessities. 



At the end of the day, 67 pets were cleaned up and any medical needs attended to. I have never been more proud to be a part of something than I was on Sunday.


Hats off to Lisa Correia and Marilyn Wainwright for organizing this event.  And to all who came.






The Groomers


Jane Cagney

Lisa Elk Carroll  IMG_0794

Lisa Correia

Elaine Chelak IMG_0785

Beth Cronk

Jon Debruler IMG_0789

Nancy Debruler

Mary Kay Erickson

Kellie Klunder IMG_0788

Kate McMahon

Mary Oquendo

Susan Pratt

Monica Villegas

Marilyn Wainwright


Our Most Awesome Helpers


Wayne Chapman

Brianna Correia

Cody Cronk

Madeline (Janes’ sister)



Special thanks goes to Dr. Dave Weiss, who was not only on hand for medical care, but helped with the grooming, and Bob and Kristen Daugherty who kept us organized and on track. IMG_0821



There are two more events scheduled for next weekend, November 17th and 18th. If you would like more information on how to attend, donate, or help your fellow groomer in need, visit our Facebook page.




Dog Park Etiquette

Dog parks have been gaining in popularity over the last several years. If your town does not already have one, you can be sure that there is a group trying to rectify that. Dog parks are the equivalent of a children’s playground; only these kids are of the furry four-legged variety. Like anything else in life, there are pros and cons.


The pros are easy. They are an excellent place to socialize and exercise your dog. 


The cons, however, can get a little long. The list includes the following:


The underlying health of another dog is unknown and can something spread to your dog. Like children who pass on colds, chicken pox, flu, etc at playgrounds, dogs could transmit giardia, kennel cough, canine influenza, rabies, and other nasties at the dog park.


Females in heat can most certainly rile up even the most well behaved males.


How old is the water in the community bowl. Standing water breeds bacteria. Then there are some dogs who guard and defend “their” water bowl. It is best to bring your own bowl and water.


Small, unattended children are always a problem. They can overexcite or annoy the dogs in the park. A small child is no match for a large dog.


Of course, there are owners who bring in treats and toys for their dogs. Nothing starts a fight faster than resource guarding. 


Then, there are those dogs that are unsuitable for dog parks because they do not like other dogs. 


Throw in possible injuries that could occur whenever dogs play, fight, or just stand around minding their own business. That list includes, but most certainly it not limited to:


Choking on provided treats or never knowing what your dog is going to find and then think is edible.


Bleeding injuries such as paw, ear, or limb.


Eye injuries.


Limb injuries from tripping in dug holes.


Sudden blunt force trauma when two dogs collide.


Insect or snake bites.


Bites from fights.

Poisoning from whatever old, moldy food may be around, but also plants and mushrooms.


The key to having a good time at the dog park is owner education. Owners need to recognize and put a stop to unwanted behavior on their pets’ part, and to realize when their pet might be in danger. Does the pet owner know what to do in the event of an injury? Which is why I teamed up with Donna Gleason, CPDT-KA, PTI, and owner of TLC Dog Trainer, LLC. She can be contacted at www.TLCdogtrainer.com. We designed a program that addresses dog park behavior and pet first aid issues. With the assistance of Kelli Peet; Regional Animal Control Officer in New Fairfield, CT, we presented at two local dog parks over this past summer.


Donna believes in being proactive rather than reactive when it comes to pet safety. “No one should be put in a position where they have to say, “ I wish I knew what to do or, I wish I could have saved my pet.” I am dedicated to helping others learn confidence and skills needed to keep their pets safe.” Her program centered around decoding dog behavior. Is there a problem or are they just playing? She discussed techniques and strategies to recognize potential problems before they become an issue.


I am a Certified Master Pet Tech Instructor and I teach a hands on, comprehensive pet first aid program across the country as well as offer webinars on various pet safety topics. I can be contacted through www.pawsitivelypretty.com. My goal was to identify and how to address potential injuries as might be common in dog parks. I was aided by Kurgo provided their treat bags to be used as a pet first aid kit. I was excited when Gordon Spater ( www.kurgo.com ) offered to send them to us as they are well made, sturdy, and just the right size for a portable pet first aid kit. Blue Buffalo ( www.bluebuff.com ), and Candlewood Drugs ( www.candlewoodrx.com ) provided some of the items in the kit. I discussed what should be in the kit and how to use it.


Our goal for this program is by raising awareness and educating more dog park attendees, we are making the dog parks the fun place they should be.


To learn more about this program, contact either Donna or myself.


Dog Park Educational Series at New Milford, CT Dog Park

Dog parks are a wonderful place for dogs to socialize and have fun. But, like any playground, injuries can occur. Some minor, some not. After Kim Stempert lost her beloved Bandit to an injury at a dog park, she became inspired to repay back the kindness of her fellow park goers. They assisted her in getting Bandit to a veterinarian and offered support. She wanted to develop a program to educate pet owners in dog park etiquette and what to do when faced with an injury. Kim contacted Kelli Peet of Regional Animal Control, who in turn contacted myself and Donna Gleason. Donna is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA) and owner of TLC Dog Grooming in Sherman, CT.

Donna's job was to design the Dog Park Etiquette Program. Along with Kelli, she presented on: dog park pros and cons, being proactive vs. reactive when in a dog park, recognizing intercanine behavior, and how to prepare yourself (and dog) before entering a dog park.


Mine was to present a pet first aid demonstration on typical park injuries. My job was made easier thanks to the generosity of Kurgo, Blue Buffalo, and Candlewood Drugs in New Fairfield, CT. These community minded companies made it possible to give out pet first aid kits to all that attended. Kurgo, www.kurgo.com; donated their treat bags. IMG_0119
Like all their products, it is durable and the perfect size for a pet first aid kit. Blue Buffalo, www.bluebuff.com; and Candlewood Drugs, www.candlewoodrx.com; donated many of the items for the kits.

IMG_0098 IMG_0092 IMG_0094

These three companies donated enough so that we can do this program again at the New Fairfield Dog Park at the end of the month. I would like to personally thank them for helping to make this program possible.