Your Pet’s Groomer: A Match Made In Heaven Or Just A Convenience?

By Leslie Klein Stone

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We all struggle with the daily prioritizing of our own needs. Your pet’s needs shouldn’t fall to the bottom of the laundry basket with the unmatched socks, just because you’re busy. Very often, adhering to the stringency of a set grooming appointment seems too much for our ever-changing schedules, and we end up delaying, rescheduling, or even dropping Fluffy off wherever it’s more convenient or less inexpensive. This may seem like a quick and easy approach, but it’s keeping you and your pet from getting the most out of your grooming visits, and it might even be costing you more in the long run.

Your regular groomer plays an important role in keeping your pet healthy as well as beautiful. A well-groomed coat contributes directly to the health, well-being, and comfort of your pet. And often, the first person to discover a veterinary issue is a careful and observant animal grooming professional!

One of the common frustrations among groomers is the need to charge additional fees for the time spent on an animal’s session because too much time has passed since their last visit. Their coat is dirty, stained, and sometimes badly matted or tangled. Detangling is an excruciating process for the dog or cat, and not an efficient use of the groomer’s time, either. The best solution is to place a priority on your pet’s regular visits with the groomer you and your pet have chosen.

“Your dog or cat should be happy to see their groomer,” says Leslie Klein Stone, owner of The Canine Spa in Cathedral City. “He should be excited when you pull into the parking lot and should willingly approach the groomer. This demonstration is the only way your pet can communicate to you that they appreciate this service and enjoy it, rather than loathe either the process or the person.” Stone says your pet will alert you if the relationship isn’t good, using the only tools they have: refusal, whining, trying to escape, or even vomiting and diarrhea during or after their experience. “Heed these signals,” she advises. “Don’t be swayed by the convenience or price factor. After all, this is the animal that gives you a hero’s welcome, whether you’ve been gone 5 minutes or 5 days!” And don’t our pets deserve the best quality care we can provide them? Of course they do.

In keeping with that same effort to keep your pet calm and at ease during grooming, your pet’s caregiver is often one of the people they are most comfortable with, so if grooming services can be provided by the same person (sometimes at the same time as boarding), all the better! The pet hotel or boarding facility where your pet is most comfortable may also be the best choice for grooming, because your pet will feel at home in the familiar environment and will associate it with a pleasant experience. And having your pet groomed while you’re away is also a great convenience for you.

This summer especially, plan ahead to help ensure your pet’s health by making a commitment to give your beloved companion the best possible grooming experience, and do it regularly. After all, they’d do it for you!

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