I grew up in a house without a dog. I remember when Ronald Reagan was running for president, my sister and I wrote a list of 50 reasons why we should have a dog. One of those reasons was because President Reagan had one. When my Dad turned 50, my mom let us get him a Collie to celebrate. He wasn’t excited about the idea, but if you ask him to this day about her, he could go on for days telling you stories of her antics and their love for each other. Fast forward a few years, I knew my first dog of my own would be a Collie but I wasn’t planning for it when it happened. I was in grad school at Penn State, and a friend saw a maybe 6 year old Collie at the SPCA, which is now the home for Pets Come First. I lived in an apartment, so getting her meant a new intense walking routine, but I was willing to make the sacrifice to sleep a little less in the morning to help an old girl out. Misty lived to a fabulous old age of 16. I figured I would have her for 4 years, and she gave me 10. Her hair was in horrible shape when she came home and it never seemed to stop raining mud, no matter how many baths she received. It was around Thanksgiving, so the wait to get a grooming appointment was a bit long but totally worth it in the end.

Misty went to the groomer monthly, until I got at job working at the veterinary hospital where she was groomed, as an assistant groomer and learned to pamper her myself. Many dogs later, I slowly learned to groom all sorts of dogs and the opportunity opened for me to be a full-time groomer. I fell in love with helping owners and their dogs manage their dogs hair to suit their lifestyles and needs. I continued to work as a groomer for 6 years, minus the few months I took off to have my two children, until my husband got a job in another state and we decided to move. I was off work for 9 months, getting the house ready to sell. As luck would have it, sometimes the best laid plans go awry, because we ended up getting a divorce. I got a job back at the veterinary hospital but as the assistant again, as my full-time grooming job had been given to someone else. My income dropped significantly. The grooming department, already grooming 20 dogs per day, could not physically fit any more dogs in it to allow for 3 full-time groomers.

A few months ago, a friend asked me how many dogs I would need to groom to make what I was currently making, after 4 years as the assistant/part-time groomer. I did the math and figured I would need to groom 2 1/2 dogs per day. This completely opened my eyes. I knew I could groom at least 5 or 6 dogs on my own each day, depending on the size, of course. If I groomed at home, I would be able to be here when my kids get on and off the bus each day. My time with them is already limited because of the divorce, so this would let me take advantage of as much time with them as I could.

Eleven years after I learned to groom my first dog, I bring to you, Wag Your Tail Grooming – an independently run home-based business where your dogs comfort and care is my top priority.

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