Hi everyone! I’m Stacey Sarek-Diate and I am the grooming manager here at Affectionate Pet Care.  I have been grooming for Amy and her company for almost 10 years.  I started grooming in my hometown of Fredonia, New York about 12 years ago after graduating from Fredonia State University with my Bachelors degree in Music Business.  I have completely fallen in love with the dog industry.  I currently live in Haymarket Virginia with my husband Ryan and our two dogs Bella (border collie mix) and Link (Cavalier King Charles).  I wanted to start writing some articles to help answer frequently asked questions about grooming and your dogs well being.  In this first write up, I wanted to explain the grooming process and what exactly your dog goes through after being dropped off at our doors.
At the beginning of every grooming appointment, we like to find out information about your dogs health. We will ask you questions about past skin issues, injuries, bites, personality and if there are any allergies.  Please inform us of anything new that has happened or come up since their last grooming appointment.  These can range from new allergies, new growths, or anything traumatic.  This will all help us keep your dog calm and happy while in our care.  Once in the grooming salon we look over your dogs body and record any matting, skin issues such as hot spots or growths, and the condition of the fur.  If your dog has a lot of matting we will prep him/her before the bath.  When it comes to matting, if there is an excessive amount, we will shave the body to ensure the skin will become clean and healthy.
Once your dog has been prepped, we can begin bathing them.  We have a wide variety of shampoos that we use.  For the more sensitive skin we offer oatmeal, hypoallergenic and skin remedy.  If you’re worried about fleas and ticks, we offer a citrus shampoo to help kill and prevent them.  You are always more than welcome to give us a call or ask about our shampoos during your grooming appointment to help us select the right one for your dog.  After the bath we use our specialized grooming dryer to help blow the water from the root to the tip of the coat before finally going into the grooming room.  We have 2 drying rooms.  They are divided by size of dog.  Our dryers do not have any heating elements so there is no worry that your dog will overheat or get burned.  Most dogs play with each other or take the opportunity to relax and nap until they are fully dry
The final step in the grooming process begins with fully brushing out your dog.  We need to make sure they are dry and mat free before putting our finishing tools to work.  Nail are then trimmed as short as they can go and the ears are plucked and cleaned.  There are a few bumps in the road that we may hit that could lengthen the grooming time.  If we are working with an elderly dog, we try to take our time to make sure they are as comfortable as possible.  If your dog is scared of the dryer noise we will hand dry them with a lower volume, lighter force dryer.  We try to accommodate your schedule as best as we can.  Please don’t hesitate to discuss your dogs grooming plan with your groomer.  I am always more than happy to answer question and concerns with what we do.