In 2007 I was working in a call center and was completely miserable. A friend saw a help wanted ad for a pet groomer and said I should apply for it. My exact words were, “I already have a job I hate.” and then, “Groomers are crazy.” I had previously managed the Specialty Department at Petsmart. They had a grooming department and the groomers were, decidedly, odd. I couldn’t get the idea out of my mind. The more I thought about it the more I thought I would like it. I also had to admit to myself that I am a little bit odd. I decided I needed more information about grooming as a career. So I got on the internet and joined a pet grooming forum. I asked what it took to be a groomer. Most of the responses by current groomers tried to scare me off. “Grooming is physically demanding.” “Burn out rate is high.” “Pet parents can be emotionally demanding.” They pointed out all the unpleasant aspects of grooming (Google “anal glands”). But I wasn’t deterred. The more I read, the more I was convinced I could do the job AND I would be happy doing the job. So I moved on to asking how I should go about getting trained. At the time I was 37. I knew I didn’t have time to do an apprenticeship. So I decided to attend a school. I quit my job and did just that. The problem was that even though I asked the right questions I wasn’t given truthful answers. The school taught that you trained a dog to stay on the table by pushing them off it. They also taught that Dawn dish soap was a great pet shampoo. I finished the schooling and ended up with a “certification” that I knew didn’t mean anything.
What I did have was the desire to be the best I could be and to learn the RIGHT way to groom a pet. I knew there was a RIGHT way and a WRONG way. As of 2023 pet grooming is not regulated or licensed by any state (some states are close). That means is that any person can pick up a pair of clippers and call themselves a groomer. I wanted and needed to set myself apart. I bought every book and DVD on grooming. I traveled to all the grooming conventions I could afford. I went to Dallas and then to Atlanta. I joined the International Society of Canine Cosmetologists and began working on certification to become a Master Pet Stylist. I learned the RIGHT way to groom and handle a dog. Then I joined the National Cat Groomer’s Institute of America and started working on becoming a Certified Feline Master Groomer. I finished my CFMG September 2011 by flying to South Carolina and passing a series of practical and written tests. In 2022 I achieved my PetCare Dermatech Specialist (PDS) and ISCC Certified Professional Pet Groomer (ICPG) both through ISCC, by passing 12 written tests and 4 practical tests. I have passed 4 of 9 written tests and 2 of 3 practical tests to achieve the highest recognition in the groomer industry, a Master Pet Stylist (MPS).
I worked at Lone Peak Veterinary Hospital from 2007-2012. Their doctors were amazingly patient and willing to answer all the questions I had. I learned how much grooming and the health of the pet are connected. Groomers are not medically trained and cannot diagnose illnesses but we can be the first line of defense. We see every inch of your pets skin and we notice symptoms that might indicate a more serious problem. I learned what I can do to make the job of your veterinarian easier.
In March of 2012 I began a new adventure of opening my own business. I converted a room, that had been added onto my house, into a grooming salon. Groom with a View was born. Grooming out of my home does not mean a second-rate service. I use only the best shampoos and conditioners. I do not sacrifice the quality or safety of the pet. Grooming out of my home means that I get to use my own bathroom, listen to my own music, and be around my own fur babies. I now have the flexibility to be as creative as I want. So when clients show up at my back door, they get to see my own shaved kitties and my multi-colored poodle. They might have wait a minute while I pause my music or the current audiobook I’m listening too, but they can be assured that their pet will receive 100% of my attention and the best services available.
In 2012 I began another new adventure, and began teaching continuing education classes to groomers nationwide. I have shared my expertise in shampoo and their ingredients to educate other groomers on how to choose the best pet shampoos and conditioners for their clients needs. I have had the opportunity to teach these classes all the way from California to Maine, and in between. My research has resulted in my being one of the frontrunners in demanding full disclose from the, unregulated, pet cosmetic industry.
From the first day of grooming school, I wanted to be a part of the greater community of groomers. I knew that I could learn from and benefit from the support of other groomers. Most recently I joined the board of Utah Professional Pet Groomer’s Association. I look forward to helping to build a strong and educated grooming industry in Utah.