Sunday, March 15, 2009

Why Groom: Before and After Photos

As part of our continuing effort to improve your dog's body, mind and spirit, we wanted to show you some real-life examples of how grooming can change a dog's life.

A few years ago, Jill was searching Petfinder to find a new dog to adopt. She came across this dog, a Miniature Poodle named Shadow, at Small Dog Adoption in Plantation, FL a small rescue run by a loving and dedicated couple Barbara and Bob Malina. Like any shelter/rescue dog, Shadow desperately needed a hair cut and some grooming TLC. As you can imagine, most shelters and rescues have little money to allocate to grooming, and instead rely on volunteers.

Luckily for Jill and Shadow, Billy had already taught her that all a shelter/rescue dog usually needs is one grooming session to bring out the true essence of that pooch. With this is mind, Jill fell in love and brought Shadow home, scraggly coat at all. (Shadow's foster mom had brushed him regularly so he had no mats, which is unusual for a rescued pooch). The photo on the top shows Shadow on his first day with Jill's family. After a day of pampering at Uncle Billy's salon, Shadow looked mah-velous. (See photo on the bottom).
In our book, Happy Dog: Caring for your Dog's Body Mind and Spirit (coming 9/1/09), we teach you how to groom and care for your pooch. Once you learn how, we are counting on our readers to visit local shelters and spiff up the dogs there too. After all, a dog that looks like a pet instead of a stray is more likely to be adopted.

Today, Billy along with his able-bodied assistant Jill, friend Sue Naiden, grooming students including Jus Erickson and some of the wonderful volunteers from Friends of Chicago Animal Care and Control spent the afternoon at Chicago Animal Care and Control to groom the shelter's dogs. We hope we made the dogs feel better and more adoptable, since they'll be beautiful and smell nice. Sheri Berliner of Petraits, an extremely talented pet photographer and friend of the shelter, was on hand photographing the dogs, so we'll post many before and after pictures. Maybe you'll fall in love and adopt one of the dogs! At the very least, we hope you'll be inspired to spend some time helping dogs in need.


  1. Hi Billy and Jill... this is a great post. I share Billy's profession of being a pet stylist, and at our shop, Yankee Clipper in Rockport, ME., we also do free grooming for our local rescue organizations. It is extremely rewarding and our way of "paying back." Liz Czak, owner of the shop, has offered this service for years. It's good karma!
    Keep up the great blogging.

  2. Terrific post! Great work! LuLu and LoLLy are Maltese dogs -- LoLLy is a rescue. We added both Small Dog Rescue and Chicago ACC to our Resources page, along with a note and link to this post, to hopefully inspire others to think about grooming to help rescue. Good luck with your book! Cynthia (Human), LuLu and LoLLy!