Well under there somewhere is me... Hi! I'm Caroline. I'm your dog's stylist, fixer-upper, beautician, whatever you'd like to call it. Basically, you hand me your dog and I make him look beautiful!
Most people when asked what they do for a living say "Oh I'm in Admin." or whatever, and people respond with "That's nice..." etc etc... When I say "I'm a dog groomer," the response is nearly always "Eh??" I suppose even though it's becoming an increasingly popular occupation, a lot of people still view it as unusual. It's always a good conversation topic though, although I sometimes wonder if people get fed up with my constant dog chat!
So what possessed me to become a groomer? Well, in all honesty my love for dogs, and you really DO have to love dogs to be a dog groomer because it's hard work! I grew up surrounded by animals, all the typical pets like goldfish, hamsters, budgies (even ferrets and a duck at one point!) and of course... dogs! We had four in the house at one point, 2 Great Danes and 2 Border Collies. My mum used to be all over the country with them, attending various shows and doing quite well! After a few years in the show ring she decided to train to become a groomer with master groomer Agnes Murphy, and worked alongside her for a while before opening Pride & Groom back in 2002.
When I left school, I joined Pride & Groom and mum trained me up, and I've been grooming ever since! Unfortunately my mum had to hang up her scissors 2 years ago, but luckily I was pretty much flying solo by then anyway so she handed the reins over and here we are! It was hard at first to adapt to working on my own without her guidance (there were a few teary days where I really thought 'what am I doing?!') but as time went on I got used to it and now I don't even have to think about what I'm doing. I LOVE my job. Don't get me wrong there are still days where even I have to breathe deep and try not to say any naughty words, but with me being so laid back those are very rare indeed.
I take grooming as a passion and a career very seriously. I believe if something's worth doing, it's worth doing right. I am currently in the process of studying for my Level 3 Certificate (City & Guilds) in dog grooming, and I try to attend as many seminars and training days as possible. I'm very keen on learning more about dogs and their behaviour, what they're trying to tell us and applying this knowledge in my work. I also know that grooming, like everything, moves with the times, so it helps to meet up with other groomers and keep up to date on techniques and things (it's also good for a gab aswell!) As a groomer you are never done learning, and I want to learn as much as my brain will hold!
Anyway, have a look at the Photo Gallery and hope to see you soon!