love of dogs
Everything started over 15 years ago when I adopted my first rescue dog, Meeka (I'm hugging her in the pic). Then, I fostered and later adopted Harry (the other in the pic). A senior, he became my shadow and instilled the love for the older ones, and the world of dog rescue.
Fostering and being a guardian of so many dogs are great teachers. You learn to deal with diverse backgrounds, personalities, and behaviours.
As my interest grew, so did my thirst to learn. I read, watched instructional videos and signed up to become a professional dog trainer. Kim, at Ottawa's Best Friends Dog Training, thought the power of the "positive reinforcement" technique.
It goes a long way, for both me, and my special Guests.
My husband and I have since fostered over 45 dogs. Of course, also guardians to a few, thirteen and counting to be exact (all rescues, mostly seniors). It even lead me to create a group: CARe – Canine Adoption + Rescue Education to raise awareness of benefits of adoption versus buying.
Then several years ago, I yearned for a more fulfilling career and if possible, involved dogs. A canine stylist was the perfect shift.
a fresh way.
How do you create a Zen experience?
You build a calming environment with minimum distractions. And to achieve this, you create a business model that centres around on the dog. Then you foster trust, with the hope to turn grooming sessions from a dreadful experience to one that is a little more relaxing.
All of this is why I chose "one-on-one" grooming.
Unlike other outfits, or big box stores, I'm the only groomer. My salon, always has one Guest. With COVID-19 still affecting us, this creates a even safer experience for everyone.
Quiet environment, entirely relaxed atmosphere
(no crowded spaces with flurries of dogs barking, running around)
Guests are more focus, calm
(they are less fidgety and follow my cues much better)
One-on-one grooming, with no other dogs in the salon
The risk of injuries from other dogs is practically eliminated
so, how does one-on-one work?
My operating model is a little special.
It demands a few extras that other types of salons don't require or consider. Add the COVID-19 precautions and you soon realise why everyone's cooperation is imperative to make it work.
Safety above all else! Please please please read and abide by my COVID-19 protocols that I have set up here for everyone's sake.
to board, or not to board
With my one-on-one model, only dog(s) of the same household is allowed in the salon at any time. This means I do not board your dog for later pickups. You must be ready at the specified time.
timing is everything
This business model aligns with my values about dogs. But, it is definitely less lucrative than cramming groomers and dogs in the salon. But that wouldn't be Zen.
Yet, it only works if the sessions' intervals are respected.
The session's length is set based on a dog's coat condition. If the interval between grooms is allowed to slip, the session demands more time. And to keep costs down, there is zero buffer between daily appointments. Plus, the risk for matts goes up along with the pain, and cost to de-matt.
running like clockwork
With no boarding available and a very tight schedule, it is imperative your dog is dropped off on time and just as importantly, you return at the specified time to pick her/him up. This way, the everyone's sessions remain on track.
FEELING EVEN BETTER
Regular grooming plays a key role in your pet’s overall health and comfort, not to mention looking wonderful. Having your loved one visit a groomer routinely (every 4 - 6 - 8 weeks) is an excellent way to maintain top hygiene.
At Zen Grooming, we believe your dog's beauty is skin deep. A good groom begins with great coat. And great coat starts with healthy skin. You achieve this with the finest, natural shampoos and conditioners appropriate for your dog's skin and coat type.
The six benefits to regular grooming:
Helps maintain healthy skin and coat
Prevents painful matting
Regular nail trims not only help keep the nails short but helps reinforce healthy foot structure and posture, it also reduces the risk of infection
Regular visits may result in early detection of issues with ears, skin, teeth and more
Well maintained coats typically shed less
Your pet looks and smells great!
Zen was designed from the ground up with zen in mind.
A minimalist environment,
natural colours, clean lines and soothing atmosphere.
Airy, large open spaces, plenty of natural daylight all around
Few distractions, no views of busy streets or sidewalks
A fully enclosed, separate bath area reducing anxiety and disassociate bathing from grooming
The bath area has a dedicated air system filtering floating hair and dander
Warm, cozy individual suites with soft matching beds and pillows for pure comfort
Q & A
Frequently asked questions
Why don't you shows your prices ?
Do you accept walk-ins, even for a nail trim?
Zen is an atypical grooming studio. I made a commitment to groom on a "one-on-one" basis. Only a single Guest is groomed at a time for a calmer environment. Our attention is all one Guests, and leaves little room for interruptions.
Do you do complete "shave downs" - even for the summer?
As a general rule, no, I don't.
I appreciate as the Guardian, you may want a certain cut, including shaving the coat. There are two reasons why I don't follow this practice:
Can I stay while you groom?
Guardians are a huge distractions. Dogs would rather be with you. Being seen makes grooming practically impossible. It is quite common for a Guest's behaviour to be different with the Parent around, even protective, endangering my work. Finally, with no distractions, they tend to concentrate on my cues making the whole experience smoother and faster.
Do I really need to fill out and approve the Registration and Consent form?
SIMPLE EMAIL MESSAGE
Questions or just want to know more? Here the form to do it!
If you are ready to join the Zen Village and would like to register your dog to book your first appointment, simply click here instead and fill out the new customer registration form.