When her pet dog Bailey returned home from the groomer completely shaved, Shaheen Shahani realised pet owners in Dubai needed more grooming options for their beloved pups. And so, Shampooch was born: with eight experienced groomers, two vans, a mobile service and a newly launched facility that’s got a salon, day care and a boutique hotel, her ethos is that ‘everybody needs a little pampering’.
How do you define ‘pet grooming’?
From bathing, nail cutting, de-shedding, clipping, trimming and hand stripping up to ‘peticure’ (nails trimmed and buffed) and tooth brushing with mint or beef flavoured toothpaste – pet grooming involves both the essentials of pet care as well as a little bit of pampering.
How essential is it?
There is a misconception that grooming is a luxury for dogs and a ‘last resort’. The reality is that it is an essential part of their health and well-being. One thing that is important for all dogs is regular visits to the groomer.
How often should dog owners groom their pets?
A professional groomer will recommend how often your dog should be groomed – it can be anywhere from once a month to once every 12 weeks, depending on the pooch in question.
Can grooming be done at home?
Can you style your own hair at home or is it better to have a professional do a proper job? Yes, you could do a very basic bath at home, but there’s a world of difference between what you can do with a hose in the garden and some basic shampoo (which can damage a dog’s coat) and what we do.
So there are products especially for dogs?
Dogs have different skin and coat types, some have allergies or dry skin and groomers select the appropriate shampoo to suit the breed, skin, and coat condition. There are many different tools too – brushes, de-shedding equipment, nail clippers, the list can go on.
Are the dogs difficult to handle while grooming?
Not every dog loves having their ear hair plucked or their nails trimmed. Animals can sense stress, so they require a very calm setting. Dogs know and behave differently when they are in professional hands.
Do pet owners have special requirements or demands?
Sometimes they walk in with a picture of a famous film star and want the same haircut for their dog. Others just want their dogs looking ‘smart’. We do our best to keep owner’s preferences in mind while keeping the well-being of the dogs as our first priority.
From Dhs200 at the salon and Dhs300 for mobile grooming, Shampooch, www.shampooch.ae, (04 340 0507).
Top dog grooming tips
1 Brush him daily, using the appropriate brush or comb recommended – make sure that there are no matts in his coat.
2 Walk your dog daily on a rough surface to help keep his nails short.
3 Check and clean his ears regularly to ensure there is no excess wax build up or any infection.
4 Check his paws and in between his pads for any twigs or other obstructions he may have picked up.
5 Spend 15-20 minutes every day playing with your dog – he’ll love the attention!
Are you a cat person instead? Or have you got a feathered friend for a pet, maybe even a fuzzy bunny – either way, grooming forms a essential part of their wellbeing, too. Laura Glanfield at Posh Paws tells us that birds often need their claws and beaks clipped, and rabbits often need their nails and sometimes teeth trimmed.
Posh Paws Animal Sanctuary, Sharjah, www.poshpawsdubai.com, (050 273 0973).