Groomer's Corner

Before and After Pics are always fun.


Eddie, the French Bulldog, joins Vinnie and Louie, both Old English Bulldogs. Eddie is so lucky to have two awesome big brothers. All three were in for grooms together. (I love his ears!!!)

                               Before                                     After

This little one is as cute as can be and a delight to groom. Sadly, I forgot to take an after picture. We were too busy playing. :)

This picture shows only part of the fur brushed and combed out. The undercoat often is a completely different color.

I love the ears on this little cutie

March has been amazing. In addition to St. Patrick's Day, the first day of Spring, time change and some beautiful weather, it has been busy in my little corner of St. Boni Pet Hospital. Thanks to everyone who has sent others in with their pets. I truly enjoy them all. I feel fortunate in having a career that I love and look forward to each day.

Happy Spring To Everyone

This is so true. The older ones have such a special place in our hearts.

How Often Should I Groom my Dog?

It doesn’t matter if your dog has a long, medium or short coat, all dogs need to be groomed regularly. Grooming doesn’t only make your dog look good, but it keeps your dog healthy and feeling well. If you find yourself asking how often or when to groom your dog, the answer is “frequently.” Your exact schedule will depend on your dog and the amount of time you have.

The short answer: Once every 4-6 weeks you should consider taking your dog to a groomer for hair clipping and nail trim. But this time can vary depending on breed and the length of hair you prefer your dog to have. Brushing should happen daily, ear cleaning weekly, and bathing monthly. If you have difficulty keeping up with brushing and ear cleaning at home, then you should see a groomer more often.

While you may choose to have a professional groomer clip your dog’s coat once every month or so, there are tasks that you can easily complete at home.


Brushing is a grooming ritual that can provide relaxation for both you and your pet. Brushing your dog’s fur keeps it free of mats and tangles that can pull tightly on the skin, causing discomfort.
Long-haired breeds of dog should be brushed or combed daily with the proper tools. Medium- and short-coated dogs need brushed less often, but daily brushing is still welcomed by many dogs regardless of the length of their coat. Regular brushing will help reduce shedding, and will save your home from getting covered in loose hair.


There’s an old rule of thumb that says dogs can’t be bathed often. This is no longer the case. With the pet-safe shampoos on the market today, you can bathe your dog as often as you like. Some pet owners choose to bathe their dog only when it is dirty. Other pet owners choose to bathe their dog on a regular basis, whether it is once a week or once each month.

To bathe your dog properly, first wet it down well with lukewarm water. Lather your dog with shampoo, and rinse your dog well. Repeating this process a second time and following with a conditioner is beneficial to the skin and coat when the correct products are used. Dry your dog with a towel and use a blow dryer on cool/low setting. Be careful not to blow directly into the ear canal or eyes.

Bathing your dog helps keep both its skin and coat clean. Bathing washes away potential allergens, and keeps your dog’s coat free of dirt and debris.


Dog’s toenails grow at different rates. When your dog’s toenails are cut correctly and often enough, they will not click on the floor or pavement when the dog walks. Clipping toenails is not difficult, but it can take some practice.

Dogs have a blood vessel in the toenail called the quick. The quick is easily seen in dogs that have light-colored nails, but it is very difficult to see in dog’s with black nails. Cutting into the quick is not the end of the world, but it is something that is avoided if possible.

Most dog’s tolerate a clipper-type cutter more readily than a guillotine-type cutter. If you can see the quick, cut to just in front of where it stops. For black-nailed dogs, cut to just where the nail begins to curve. Try to only take a tiny sliver of nail off at a time.

Keep a product like Kwik Stop styptic powder handy when you are cutting toenails. This product will stop bleeding if you cut into the quick. Failing to keep your dog’s toenails trimmed can cause the nails to curve under and into your dog’s pads. This not only causes a painful condition, but can eventually affect your dogs foot and ankle joints due to an altered gate.

Ear Cleaning

Cleaning your dog’s ears once each week helps to prevent ear infections. Cleaning your dog’s ears is a relatively easy task. You can purchase cleanser from your veterinarian or the pet store.

Fill your dog’s ears with cleanser, and massage the ears at the base. Allow your dog to shake its head. Repeat this process twice more. Wipe out your dog’s ears with a cotton ball or piece of gauze. Use a clean cotton ball or gauze pad on each ear to avoid cross-contamination.

Dogs that swim benefit from a product like Swimmer’s Ear. This product helps to keep the ear canals dry. Excessive moisture can rapidly lead to ear infections.

Benefits of a Regular Routine

There are many benefits of regular grooming for both you and your pet. The ritual itself is very calming for the both of you, reducing stress and anxiety. Regular grooming/brushing can also serve to deepen the bond between you and your dog.

Grooming involves several hands-on activities. By regularly touching and looking at your dog, you may notice spots, lumps and bumps more quickly, allowing you to seek treatment in their early stages.

Regular cleaning of your dog’s ears can help to prevent infection. It can also alert you to an infection when it starts, not several weeks after it has set in.

Grooming offers one of the best ways to get to know your dog’s body. When you know what your dog feels like and looks like on a normal basis, you are able to notice abnormalities quicker. If you don’t already have a grooming ritual, put one in place today for the health of your pet!

January is a great month for a spa day. Make an appointment for your canine or feline friend.

Trying new hair styles on a very tolerant girl.

# 1 Mohawk 

# 2 Presidential

We decided to go with the original do.

For those who think my job consists of playing with pets all day.....

                                  On this particular day, I must admit, guilty !  :)

Make your grooming appointment soon to insure having your pet ready for the holidays! Here are a few who have been in recently


The most difficult part of being a pet groomer is saying goodbye. They all touch my heart and take a little piece of it with them. For everyone who has lost a beloved pet, this is for you.

Thanks to everyone for their patience while we learn to navigate the new computer system.

Too darn cute to miss the photo opportunity

                                                  Feather hair extensions are available on request

Regular grooming is beneficial in many ways. It's good for the skin and coat. Your pet is much more comfortable with shorter nails and being matt free. Your groomer may notice changes in your dog or cat and ask a medical professional to observe. We also offer an incentive to keep your pet on a regular grooming schedule. When you pick up from a grooming appointment and make your next appointment within 8 weeks, toothbrushing will be provided at no additional charge. This is a savings of $13.

Two tiny black Pomeranians

Two tiny black Pomeranians came in for a groom. Same day, different families.

Is this where the line dancing is??


This golden eyed beauty came in for a groom. It's amazing how much is brushed out during the grooming process

Some of my favorite clients are the seniors. They seem to enjoy the bath and gentle massage in the tub even more than most. By using a rear support strap that keeps a lot of weight from the back legs, grooming becomes a relaxing and welcome process for them

Samoyeds are beautiful dogs with thick, lush coats. They are known to be loyal guardians, while being gentle and unusually intelligent. Referred to affectionately as "Sammies."

Muggles, the Sammie was in for a groom. I had so much fun with that beautiful boy. Even though his name implies he is "non-magical", (if you are a Harry Potter fan you will know what I am talking about) I found him to be decidedly regal.

The gorgeous Tonka is groomed every three months. What an absolute sweetheart!

This little one seems deep in thought

The warmer weathers also means fleas and tick. We are already seeing them, so be sure your pet is protected.

March is here along with Spring like days. I don't know about you, but my dogs love to play in the dried plants, stickies and mud. It may be helpful to have them on a regular grooming schedule for many reasons. Skin and coat health are helped with brushing and the right products. We have a variety of pet products to help with dry or oily skin. Always let us know any changes or concerns with your pets coat and skin. Keeping the nails clipped makes your dog more comfortable. If you don't need a groom, we offer nail trims, too. If your dog seems to be shedding more, we offer a de-shed treatment. This includes a specially formulated shampoo and conditioner, followed by high velocity drying to remove loose hair. Then brushing with an assortment of hair grabbing tools. More blowing with the dryer then combing. This will give your pet a silky soft coat and help decrease the shedding.

Happy Valentine's Day !


Lizzie After

Lizzie before

Cats need grooming too.

Schnauzers are great dogs. Athletic, loyal and wonderful pets.

Buddy has the best smile! I love grooming this guy. Dogs really do have a sense of humor.

Many of you know about my fondness for Maltese and also know I added a third pup to the family in July. One of my sweet co-workers left the following picture taped to my grooming room wall. They know me so well!

Sioban, Beignet and Ceili

Hope to see you soon!


Do you like my ear bows?

Kennick is ready for the holidays with a feather hair extension.

The face on this girl is so cute! She always has her tongue out.


Schedule your grooming appointments early to save a spot.   


   This is   D.O.G.  

Puppies, Puppies and more puppies!!! Another reason I love my job. The last couple of months have bought so many puppies in for a first groom. I love meeting them (and you!) and spending some time getting them accustomed to grooming. Thank you for the opportunity to have a role in your pets life. 

October is here and the topic is matting.

"Matting” refers to densely tangled clumps of fur in a pet’s coat. If a coat is not properly and/or frequently brushed, loose and live hair become embedded in large masses. Sometimes “mats” can be combed out, but if left too long, it is impossible without seriously hurting the animal.
Matts can form in both the outer coat as well as the deeper undercoat. Sometimes severe matts form in the undercoat and are unnoticeable because of a heavy outer coat. If left completely unattended, a pet’s fur can become entirely matted to such an extent that the only recourse is to shave the entire coat. Many times owners will think their pets coat is matt free when only the very top layer is brushed. Some of the areas that are prone to matting are behind the ears, under the front legs (think arm pit), the inside of the legs, sanitary area and between the toes. Those areas are particularly sensitive to shave.

Matting is especially prevalent in long-hair dogs during seasonal shedding if the excessive hairs are not removed. Regular and frequent grooming—especially brushing—is absolutely necessary to not only prevent mats, but to keep your pet’s coat and skin healthy. In our area, many dogs enjoy life at the cabin and frequent swimming. Rinsing your pet thoroughly after swimming, blow drying and then brushing will help keep the matts to a minimum.

Severe matting can be extremely painful to your dog during brushing. Brushing only causes live hairs to be pulled out of the skin with excruciating pain. Even mild matting can cause your pet a great deal of pain.
Severe matting can cut off blood supply to extremities, and deny regular air circulation. Skin denied fresh air and stimulation from regular brushing becomes quite unhealthy. It can turn dark pink to red, and open sores are apt to form emitting foul odors. Even organic matter, like weeds and stickers, can become embedded in the skin. Matts have been known to contain stool of the pet because matting around the anus can prevent easy elimination for your pet. Remember, sometimes these mats and their consequences can be completely hidden from view.

Removing Matts
 This is a very painful and uncomfortable process when the matting is extensive. A few matts can be removed with the proper tools and skill, with minimal discomfort. If the matting is severe, the best course of action is to shave it off.
 Shaving a matted coat is a delicate and slow process requiring experience and expertise. A dog’s skin is thin like tissue paper, and dense mats can cause it to become loose due to the weight of the matting. Clippers can easily cut loose skin if not done properly and safely. After removing the matted fur, your pet is gently bathed in warm water and a very mild shampoo. After drying will come the second shave to even up the coat.

After shaving, a pet may develop an itchy skin response. Owners should watch to ensure that constant scratching does not cause the skin to become irritated.
Dead, loose hairs should be removed through regular and thorough brushing. This is especially important for long-haired dogs, and when dogs shed seasonally. Brushing also aerates the fur and skin. Regular, professional grooming is essential, too, because your St Boni Pet Hospital groomer
thoroughly bathes and brushes with particular attention to areas where mats quickly form. Keeping your dog’s hair at a manageable length also helps to prevent matting.
Grooming should be done on a regular basis every 4 to 6 weeks;* after 8 to 10 weeks, a coat may become too dirty and matted to maintain (depending upon breed and lifestyle of your dog)

We are always here to answer any questions you may have. Our goal is to have a long and successful partnership with you and your pet.

When I met Stanley for the first time, it was an Awwww moment. He was a St. Bernard puppy. Still small enough to pick up with feet big enough to let you know he wouldn't stay that size for long. It has been so fun watching him grow. Now he is fast approaching his one year birthday and came in for a groom.


Last week brought a cute new client. Finn is a 5 month old puppy who came in for the puppy package. It is designed for a young puppy to start out with a happy and positive grooming experience. The actual haircutting is minimal. I trim nails, feet, sanitary area and face as much as is safe and comfortable for your pet. Bath, blow dry and brush is also introduced. Finn did great for his first groom. :)

Martini Shay is a wee tiny girl. She is so pretty with such lovely big eyes.

Tinies to giants, all are welcome.

Jasper is a gentle giant. This sweet boy came in for a groom last week. He is one of those clients that I absolutely love to see. :)

A big smile from Kira wishing you Happy August!

~~9 Interesting Facts About Your Cat's Paws
Paws help cats communicate, climb, run, stay cool, and increase their chances of survival.
Cat paws are amazing. Spend a few moments examining your cat’s paw pads, especially the front ones. In addition to being colorful and cute, they are versatile and have serious jobs to do that increase the odds of survival. They function as communication systems, environmental sensors, and hunting and grooming tools. They also are shock absorbers and help regulate body temperature.
Cats have dominant paws
Did you know that your cat may have a dominant front paw? Although studies differ as far as the percentages of cats who are right, left, or ambidextrous, they all agree that felines do have paw preferences, especially when they are performing challenging tasks. One study, conducted by Queens University in Ireland, correlates gender with paw dominance. Their data shows that male cats prefer to use their right paw, where as females go with the left. You can find out which paw your cat prefers by giving her difficult tasks, such as fishing yummy treats out of hard to reach places. In order to get the most accurate reading, the task needs to be replicated at least 75 times. Your cat will probably be eager to help.
Cats walk tiptoed
Cats are Digitigrade. They navigate through their world on tippy toes. It’s about survival and a good meal. Walking and running on toes ups the odds of having a successful hunt by boosting speed and lengthening the strides. Cats are also quieter on their toes, making it harder for prey to detect them.
Paws are sensitive
There’s a reason why most cats object to their paws being rubbed and fiddled with. Their little paw pads are extremely sensitive. They contain large concentrations of nerve receptors, making them finely tuned sensory organs that aid in hunting and maintaining balance. Because of these receptors, cats feel texture, pressure, and possibly vibrations through their paw pads, helping them evaluate the liveliness and close proximity of their prey.
Sensitivity comes at a cost. Although paw pads are strong enough to protect cats against some environmental damage, they are very sensitive to temperature, pressure, and pain. The soft pads are not insulated and can be severely injured by hot pavement, frozen sidewalks, and ragged surfaces.
Paws are flexible
Cat paws are incredibly flexible. The ability to bend and turn helps felines climb and hunt. One of the reasons cats are so adept at climbing trees is because their front paws are designed to turn inward in order to sink claws into branches. This helps them maintain stability as well as pull them up and around branches. Although this is handy for climbing trees, it doesn’t help with the descent. Cats back down trees because their front claws face in the wrong direction for a head-first downward climb. Additionally, front legs and paws are weaker than their more muscular back legs. This is why cats sometimes get stuck up in trees.
Paws act as shock absorbers
Another job they excel at is acting as shock and sound absorbers. Paw pads cushion and soften landings when cats jump and when they walk on rough ground. They also help cats move and hunt silently.
Cats use paws for grooming
Paws and forelegs are perfect little grooming tools -- helping cats clean those hard to reach areas behind ears, under chins, and on necks and faces. They accomplish this by first licking their paw several times and then wiping it on those areas that they can’t directly lick. Usually after a few paw swipes, they pause to lick and moisten their paws again and repeat the process. Kittens typically begin grooming with their front paws before they’re 4 weeks old.
Paws sweat
Cats sweat from the bottom of their paw pads. This cooling system helps keep cats from overheating on hot days. Frightened and stressed cats also sweat from the bottoms of their paws. The next time you take your cat to the veterinarian, watch for her little foot prints on the examining table. Most likely she’s not having a good time.
Cats use paws to communicate
One of the many reasons cats scratch objects is to mark their territories and broadcast information about themselves. In addition to the visual evidence, pheromones are deposited on scratched surfaces from scent glands that are located between the paw pads. This scent is packed with information about the scratcher. Even paw pads on the hind feet have scent glands. Cats sometimes scrape areas after they’ve urinated or sprayed.
Paw colors vary
Paw pads come in colors that match the rest of the cat’s color scheme. Cats who sport grey fur usually have grey paw pads. Those who are orange have matching pink little ones. "Tuxedo" colored cats often come equipped with black spots on their paw pads. The pigments that make up the fur are the same that colors the skin.
You may never look at your cat’s paw pads again in the same way. Typical of other feline characteristics and behaviors, paw pads are multifunctional -- all with the sole purpose of increasing the odds of survival.

Jerre is the newest member of Gaylen and Kathy's family.

She was at St Boni Pet Hospital for her first groom.

Little Jerre after her bath

With her day at the spa complete,

Jerre is relaxing while waiting for her ride.


Stacy and Marley



Sophie is a darling Scottish Terrier. She is so good natured and fun to groom.


Kirby Puckett came in for a new summer do. It's so fun to do creative hair designs.

This little sweetheart came in for a beauty day before a photo shoot.

I think all of my clients are celebrities!


Remember it is flea and tick season. If you haven't already, it's time to start your preventative treatment.

Summer is around the corner, so call for your pet to have a "day at the spa." If you are finding an extra amount of hair in your house, you may want to schedule a de-shed appointment. This starts with brushing, then a bath with special shampoo and conditioner to help release the undercoat. High velocity drying will remove a huge amount of undercoat. Then more brushing with grooming tools that remove even more loose coat.

Dachshunds come in several color combinations and coat type. There are short, long and even wire haired coats.~~A typical dachshund is long-bodied and muscular, with short, stubby legs. Its front paws are unusually large and paddle-shaped, for extreme digging. They originated in Germany with the word "dachshund" meaning badger dog. Long coated dachshunds have a silky coat and short featherings on legs and ears.

Three Doxies came in for a groom on Friday.

Stella doesn't mind being groomed as long as Rebecca is in sight.

Rebecca is such a pretty color and so good for her groom.

Shadow knows when the bandana goes on, it will soon be time to see the family.

Time to be groomed.

Is it Spring yet? It's the perfect time to bring your pet in for a "spa" day. Your cat will benefit from grooming, too. This can include nail trim, ear cleaning, bath, blow out, brush and a cut. Most cats seem to enjoy the process and shed less afterwards.

Maxie loves to sing. While I groom her, she serenades me.

The third week of February brought these beauties in. All grooms start with ear cleaning and ear hair plucking if needed. Then the nails are trimmed. Did you know we offer dremmeling/filing as an add on service? This makes the nails more gentle on your legs and floor.

 Baths are always with a gentle shampoo and lathered twice. We use shampoo with a light scent unless no scent is requested.


Dashell, the beautiful Australian Shepherd was happy in the bath.

This cute Cavalier King Charles was so fun! Lily is a darling girl.

Friday the 13th was a good day for grooming at St Boni Pet Hospital. It was Sadie day! I had the pleasure of grooming three Sadie's.

The first Sadie is a beautiful, gentle Golden Retriever. She lifts her paw for me to hold during the groom. Her favorite part is the finishing dry. I hand dry to about 90%. The final 10% is done in a kennel dryer. Many dogs find this very relaxing and fall asleep.

 The second Sadie was in for her second groom. She had been in for an introductory puppy groom before. She is a Miniature Labradoodle. Her family likes a more fluffy style and keep her brushed and tangle free. Such a charmer this Sadie is.

The third Sadie of the day smiled the entire time. Such a happy girl! By this time, I remembered to take a before picture too. It's always fun to see the transformation.

This cute Pug seems to be looking in disbelief at all the fur brushed out. Grooming is not only haircuts. Many breeds benefit from having a bath, brush and blow out. If your pet is shedding, I can help. Dogs with short coats sometimes shed the most. Using a high velocity dryer and the right brushes can make a huge difference.

Daley came in for a groom. The fur on the right is only a portion of undercoat that was combed out.

This is about 1/4 of the fur that came from a Black Labrador Retriever. These are only a few examples of grooming to remove excess coat.

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