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Behind the Scenes: Life as a Groomer

One of our Care First Animal Hospitals groomers answered a few questions in between coloring a poodle’s hair and giving a cat a lion cut to fill us in on life as a groomer! Emily is at our Glenwood location.

How did you figure out you wanted to work with animals?

I’ve always loved animals, ever since I was young. I was having a hard time deciding what major I wanted to be in college, so looked at job listings to get an idea. When I saw the job posting for an animal care technician position at Glenwood, I applied right away. Working in animal care was a lot of fun, but what I found I was really passionate about was pet grooming. I found a wonderful school in Greensboro, Nanhall, and came back to Glenwood as a full fledged groomer!

What’s the best part of your job?

Do I have to pick one? There are a lot of great things, from seeing all different types of dog and cat breeds, to doing a complete makeover on an animal! I do love putting the bows and bandanas on the dogs. A lot of little dogs will sit stock still for me until I put their bows and bandanas on and then jump around excitedly as if they love their accessories. The best part has to be when I do a serious makeover, and the owner is obviously thrilled with the way the dog looks. That makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside! I’m also starting to get into creative grooming, which means dyeing and styling a dog’s coat. Usually I only do tails or paws, which is still a lot of fun to me.

What’s your least favorite part?

The fact that I can’t tell an animal (in a way it understands) that I have absolutely no intention of hurting them. A lot of animals are quite scared of the groom room and I wish I could reassure them that everything will be fine!

How do you deal with euthanasia?

In the grooming department, euthanasia hits us differently. Sometimes we will be working the day a pet we see regularly is being euthanized, so we will go give them one last hug goodbye.

How do you balance work and home life?

I rarely work into the evening, which is nice. That way I can unwind the rest of the evening, and cook dinner. I have 3 cats that luckily don’t require much grooming, so I don’t do very much grooming on my own pets. I would really like a white standard or miniature poodle that I can practice creative grooming on, though a lot of groomers I know would think I’m a glutton for punishment!

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