Reserve your appointment as soon as possible in order to get the day & time that is best for you. Weekends & holiday months fill up quickly.
Just a reminder, we are very busy and we do appreciate our customers, but keep in mind we can only groom a certain number of dogs each day. If you know your furry friend will need to be groomed in a month or two, please book now. We also suggest you reserve your next appointment when you pick up your pet from grooming.
Pretty Paws is popular and we want to keep everyone happy, so please plan ahead and make your
reservation early. We believe in Quality over Quantity and will not compromise in the decision. This is one of the reasons we ARE so Busy!
Does my dog need to be fully vaccinated to visit Pretty Paws?
Definitely! It is in the best interest for your pets and the other visiting pets. For their protection, we adhere to a strict vaccination policy. Please be ready to provide current vaccination records for rabies, distemper & parvovirus (DHLPP) If you do not have vaccination records, we will contact your vet to verify before your visit. Corona/Bordetalla (kennel cough) vaccines are highly recommended but not required. We leave this decision to the pet owner and are not responsible if your pet is not vaccinated against airborne diseases. Just like when you visit a boarding kennel or a dog park, your pet is at risk if he/she is not protected. Viruses like kennel cough have an incubation period of up to 7 days with no warning signs. We have no way of telling if yours or another pet is carrying this virus. There are many strains of Bordatella, and the vaccination does not protect against all mutations. Please discuss this with your vet. If your pet is senior or immuno-compromised, you may opt for the vaccine. Additionally, if your pet is exhibiting any signs of illness (vomiting, diarrhea, excessive coughing, etc.), please call to reschedule your appointment. Although we thoroughly disinfect work ares and tools, we do not want to risk passing any contagions to other pets.
What is the cost?
Costs of grooming are based on the pet's individual needs. No matter what description you give of your dog over the phone, it is impossible for us to visualize the state of his or her coat. The condition of the coat & skin, pet's temperament & behavior and type of hairstyle preferred are all taken into consideration. All pets are different and some pets will only tolerate so much. Some pets are groomed once a year, some are kept on a regular schedule. All the factors are important to set a price. For all of these reasons, the best we can do is to give you an approximation of the price over the phone. It is your responsibility to maintain your pets coat, therefore please do not neglect proper brushing and combing for a month just because you have an appointment with us. The only thing we can do with a badly matted coat or a coat full of knots is to shave it off and start again. Check out our service page.
What is your cancellation policy?
If you must cancel an appointment, please try to give us at least 24 hours notice. Pets arriving more than 30 minutes late may need to be rescheduled. No Shows with No Calls will be noted on cards and will count as strikes on your record. After 2 strikes you will be charged a service fee. After 3 strikes, I will no longer groom your pet. If these penalties seem harsh, please consider that we work on an appointment basis. If you miss your appointment - a spot for another client has been taken and we have lost valuable business. By running excessively late, the entire day gets set-back resulting in delays for all subsequent appointments, which in turn upsets our other clients. We do appreciate your consideration and understanding to these matters. Thank you!
What will happen when we get there?
This is an easy question; your pet will get spoiled! We never pressure your pet. Expect your pet to be nervous upon arrival; after all he thinks he has been taken to the Vet. Plus you've taken him to a strange place, he has never been before, with lots of new smells, he has no idea what to expect and imagines the worst. We will ask your pets name and always get down to your pets level to greet him immediately. We hope he comes over to check us out and we can pet him and receive a few doggie kisses. If he decides to withhold judgment until later, then that is OK too. When you first arrive at Pretty Paws we will spend several minutes getting to know you and your pet. We will ask you to fill out a questionnaire. The questions are on your pet's skin and coat conditions, medical issues, activity levels and your pet's lifestyles. During this time we will discuss what your wishes for your pet are. Do you want short and easy to care for? Do you want fluffy and puppyish? Do you like long flowing coats? We'll talk about your pet's habits and your at home grooming habits to help determine what will work the best. If you already have a style in mind tell us. We all love the look of long hair blowing in the wind as our pet trots back happy to our feet. Reality is long hair collects dirt, grass, sticks and burrs, not to mention urine, food and water and requires a lot of effort to keep tangle free. Do you like spending time combing and brushing your pet, or would you rather spend time playing ball and going for long walks? Do you have time to comb your pet every day? Does your dog swim in the summer months? Do you have the necessary tools to take care of long hair? The grooming process will begin with a check of the skin and ears, and any problem we will inform you of them at time of pick up or we may call if need be. All Full Service Grooms include nails cut, ear cleaning (with hair plucked if needed), gland expression, shampoo and a customized hair style. Each pet will receive a bandana or bow and a spritz of cologne. If you do not want bows, bandanna or cologne please let us know. A nice massaging bath is given with appropriate shampoo. If glands need emptied we will do so if they are easily expressed. If they are difficult to express we will let you know they need to be done at the vet's office. Your pet is hand fluffed dried. We do not use heated cage dryers. Crate drying is done with room temperature air that is carefully monitored. You can go home with a soft clean, sweet smelling pet that has just lost a ton of loose hair, while we clean up all the mess!
Can I stay with my pet during the grooming process?
Our liability policy does not allow for customers in the grooming or bathing areas. You may slip on the loose hair or wet surfaces. We also take the chance of you getting bit, scratched or knocked down by another customer's pet. We have nothing to hide, this is why we have built an open salon. Pets are calmer and better behaved for the grooming process when the owner is not present. We have learned from past experiences that owners have a tendency to overprotect their dog while he or she is being groomed. When the owner is present the dog is so focused on the owner that it disrupts our grooming procedures. The pet will bark, try to lunge off the table, become very excited with the idea of you coming over to pet him. This will make the task much harder for the groomer. The owner's presence divides the dog's attention in 2 parts: the owner and the groomer. Working with sharp tools makes it imperative for the stylist to have 100% of the dog's attention. If we don't have dogs full attention this could cause serious, unnecessary accidents to occur. All dogs are groomed in the same area where all stylists work, that way the supervision is constant. The simple fact of having a strange face entering the grooming area creates a commotion. This stressful and chaotic atmosphere of dogs barking makes our job very difficult. Thank you for understanding
I don't want my dog in a cage. Can you accommodate this request?
Crates are necessary for the safety and security of your pet. While we hand dry all animals after a bath, we also use cage drying to complete the process using monitored room temperature air. Most dogs do not like a blow dryer near their faces. There will also be some "down time" before, during and after the groom process where the animal will be placed into the crate to relax. Most animals accept our roomy comfortable cages without hesitation and feel more secure there. The sights, sounds and smells of other dogs, the clipper noises, brushing, etc . . . all of these factors cause your pet's heart rate to go up, the "down time" in the cages relaxes them and lets them calm down before we continue. You may think your pet does not like cages but they do feel more secure and comfortable in our private, roomy crates.
My dog is matted but I don't want him shaved. Why won't you brush him out?
Quite frankly, we won't brush out a matted pet because it irritates the skin, causes brush burns and hurts. It hurts the dog to have its hair pulled repeatedly, even if done gently. Brushing out a matted pet does not leave healthy hair or skin behind either. When hair matts up it becomes damaged, thin and much easier to matt up again. For the pet's comfort and to achieve a healthy coat it is better to cut the hair short and practice better grooming habits in the future. If you do not have the time to properly take care of a long coated breed, bi-weekly brush outs appointments can be scheduled to help keep your pet's coat matt free.
I brush my dog every day, but he is still matted. What am I doing wrong?
Most likely if you are brushing every day you aren't getting down to the skin to remove tangles where they start. Keeping a long coated dog or a full coated dog tangle and matt free means you have to comb every inch of hair starting at the skin level and working your way out to the ends, over every part of your pet’s body Remember their legs, belly, behind ears and base of tail. If you've never been taught how to do this, let us know and we can have a quick lesson on how to properly comb your pet. I can also show you the proper tools to use at home to make the job easier for you. But . . . be honest with yourself . . . are you really brushing your pet everyday?
How often should my pet be groomed?
All dogs no matter how much or how little hair they have can benefit from a professional grooming. Typically a short single coated dog (Miniature Pinscher, Boxer) is fine going 8 weeks without bathing. Short thick coated dogs (Lab, Pug) and Double Coated breeds (Husky, Shepherd) shed a lot. Bathing once a month helps to remove more of the shedding coat in our salon and not in your living room. Dogs kept in long or full coat (Yorkie, Maltese, Shih Tzu, Bichon) need to be combed daily with a bath or brush out every two weeks and full service groom every 4 - 6 weeks.
Why does it seem so expensive to have my dog groomed? "It only costs me half as much for MY hair to be done?"
When you go to have your hair cut how long does it take? Generally an hour even with a shampoo and blow dry. If you would like us to only groom your dogs head, we would be glad to lower your price. However, grooming involves the dogs whole body, nails, ears and rear end. Your dog is actually receiving a full body massage, full body shampoo, brush out, shave down or style. A manicure. A pedicure. An ear cleaning. A bikini wax. Anal gland expression. And much, much more . . . Does your hair dresser have to worry about you moving suddenly while she is trimming the long hairs hanging down by your eyes? Next time you are having your hair done try biting your stylist or better yet going potty in her chair, ask her for a manicure and pedicure and see if she raises your price. . . . Dog grooming is hard work. It involves mental and physical strength. It involves skill and training and comes with many more hazards then cutting human hair.
How often should my dog's toenails be trimmed?
If you walk your dog daily on concrete you may find they don't need to be trimmed very often. Most pets though are turned out in the backyard or walked in parks where they don't wear down the nails naturally. In this case nails should be trimmed at least every four weeks. When we do your dogs nails they are trimmed and then filed allowing us to get them a bit shorter and much smoother then possible with just trimming alone.
Is my pet too old to be groomed?
Elderly pets are one of the hardest age groups to work with. With age comes aches and pains for older pets, concessions to the grooming process must sometimes be made. Fancier cuts for older pets are sometimes no longer appropriate as the process takes too long for them. In some cases it is much more humane to just give them a short hair cut so they do not need to be stressed as often by leaving the home. I do have a special support system for pets who need help standing. If they are more comfortable resting on their sides this can also be done to help them through the grooming process. I will accomplish as much as can be safely done for your pets comfort. If however, I feel your pet is becoming stressed or is in discomfort I will stop the grooming and call you to pick up and we can continue at another time.
I have a new puppy. When can I have her groomed for the first time?
We like to see new puppies in our salon after the second set of vaccinations. It's never too early to begin table training and manners. Your puppy's first visit will be short, as puppies have very short attention spans and need to go home to take their naps. As long as they have their second round of vaccinations, we would be happy to work with them. Puppies require training to become comfortable with the grooming process. The first time they come in for a grooming you as an owner cannot expect them to be perfectly groomed. Training takes time and repeating the lessons they learn. Because our salon is quiet often times we can get everything done the first time, but not always. Some puppies need more time learning one part of the process over another. Some need more time learning to stand on the table, some adjusting to the sound and vibration of the clippers, some need more time with the blow dryer. Puppies are given breaks to digest what they have learned and to have a few minutes of play time in between their hard work of being good. Should I feel your puppy has had enough and has learned as much as it can for the day I'll let you know it's time for pick up. I will only do as much as your puppy can handle and may ask you to reschedule to continue the appointment. When you take your puppy home please know she will probably be ready for a big nap. Learning is HARD work.