Enterprising Ideas

Clip n’ Go

Pro Pet Grooming at Your Front Door

By Marge Shoemaker

Taking a child to the dentist or hairdresser can be a hassle. Taking more than one at the same time is a definite chore…especially when they’re young. It’s normal for kids to dread trips to places where strange noises, smells, and surroundings are often intimidating. Those of us who have furry, four-legged members in our families know that everything I’ve just said about kids is also true of our dogs!


Bill Martens is a man who sees a need and tries to fill it. Bill has three dogs: two shih tzus (Little Boy and Keno) and a chihuahua (Mr. Happy). Even though his dogs are small, Bill found it a chore getting them to a groomer. “Taking them one at a time was time-consuming,” he recalls. “Wrangling all three at once posed a definite challenge!”


His own frustrating experience seeded the idea of rigging a van and having a qualified groomer go to the customer. His idea came to fruition in October of 2016, when he founded Clip n’ Go. “Mobile pet care is a convenient service for people who have multiple dogs, for senior citizens, for people with disabilities, for busy professionals—even for people who simply don’t drive,” Bill notes.


It’s also great for pets who don’t like to travel. We’ve all seen dogs balk at getting in a car, usually because it’s associated with a previous unpleasant experience. “Mobile grooming allows the dog to stay in a familiar setting,” Bill explains. “It’s less stressful for everyone involved.” That familiarity is why he’s glad that talented groomer Maria Palacio has been with him from the beginning. “Maria is particular about her work,” he asserts. “Her clients are all special to her.”


When dogs roll on the ground or lick and chew their fur, they are trying to keep clean. To maintain a healthy coat, they need a little help—and that’s where regular dog grooming comes in. Bill advises professional grooming about every six weeks. Regular brushing spreads natural oils, removes dirt, prevents tangles, and keeps skin clean and irritant-free. Brushing also helps with shedding, which is a normal process for dogs. (The amount of shedding depends on health, breed, and season.)


Regular bathing can forestall skin problems. A dog’s skin condition is an indication of overall health. Skin problems, often indicated by excessive scratching, chewing, or licking, can have a wide range of causes. External parasites, infections, allergies, metabolic problems, stress, or a combination of these may be to blame. Grooming time is also an excellent time to check for fleas and other pests.


Just as human babies need regular checkups, our pets need regular care for their teeth, eyes, and ears. Getting your dog’s teeth brushed on a regular basis keeps the whole mouth healthy. As in humans, bacteria and plaque-forming foods may cause an unhealthy buildup of tartar in a dog’s mouth, which can lead to gum disease and tooth loss. Regular mouth cleaning also helps keep your dog’s breath more pleasant.


Maria will check your dog’s eyes during each grooming session, as well. Tearing, cloudiness, inflammation, or excessive discharge may indicate a health problem. Regular ear checks are important for dogs who produce excessive earwax or have a lot of inner-ear hair. Non-professional attendance to these problems may cause injury or make a problem worse. “Our groomers always alert the owner to any problems they find,” Bill assures us. “We’re groomers, not veterinarians. We’ll send you to a vet when necessary.”


Paw care is also vital for happy, healthy dogs. Paw pads cushion and protect bones and joints from shock. They provide insulation in cold weather, aid walking on rough surfaces, and protect the paw tissue. Regular inspections guard against wounds, infections, or foreign objects that may become lodged between a dog’s toes. Nails should be trimmed regularly before they touch the ground or get snagged. The paws of pampered indoor pets may require more nail attention than pups who often play outdoors or run on hard surfaces.


Bill knows how particular pet owners can be about their pooches—after all, he has three dogs of his own! Bill looks for groomers who truly love animals, are particular about the job they do, and will spend the time needed to make each dog’s visit a happy one. It’s just what we expect from the hairdressers who cut our own hair, Bill notes. “We don’t want someone working on us doing a rush job and making mistakes. If Maria takes a longer-than-average time grooming a client, I know it’s for a good reason,” he says proudly. “Grooming is hard but rewarding work!”


Clip n’ Go can be found online at clipngoomaha.net. If you think bringing your dog’s groomer right to your door would make life easier for you and your dog, call 402-669-6876 to make an appointment.

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Owner Bill Martens