---- — Shop Talk is a weekly column featuring locally owned and operated businesses. This week, we talk to Jennifer Scott, owner of J & K Kanine Klips.
How long have you lived in the area?
I've lived in this area all my life and 13 years in Masonville.
Tell me about your business:
I do customized cat and dog grooming and sell some retail supplies including brushes, combs, shampoos, collars and leashes. I also try to educate the customers on the importance on brushing their pets and the use of flea control.
Describe a typical day in your business:
At the beginning of the day I get the cards ready for the pets that are coming in and get the specific shampoos ready for the pets. As my customers come in we discuss any concerns that they might have for their pet. I have the pets scheduled throughout the day so when they are in my salon all of my focus is on them at that time. After they are done they get to go home. After the pet leaves I disinfect the cage that they were in and get it ready for the next pet. At the end of the day I do an overall cleaning of the salon.
How did you get started in this line of work?
I've always had a love for pets and have been around them all my life. I was boarding my dogs one day and the owner was saying how busy they were with the grooming. At the time I didn't even know how many people actually had their pets groomed, I got curious and started looking into it. After some time of bugging a local groomer to show me the ropes she finally gave in and offered me a chance to learn. That is how I got to where I am today.
Where do you see this business in five years?
In five years I would like to see my business expand to other services for my customers and their beloved pets.
Describe a memorable moment in your workplace:
The most memorable moment so far would be when one customer came in with a "puppy," which at the time was about 135 pounds and I was wondering how I was going to get him into the tub. I got him in the tub, he was really good about it but we both got a bath. After he was done getting groomed for the day I had my son hold him so I could take a picture. He was standing by the tub and jumped right into it, the tub is elevated so we didn't see that coming! The dog is a lot bigger now and one of the biggest sweethearts you'll ever meet. When he comes back he is a joy to be around and that is what makes me like what I do.
What have you learned from your work?
I have learned that pets are like people all with their own personality, some are sweet and some are challenging.
What is the most challenging part of what you do?
Its challenging when working with pets that have issues. Whether it be an aggressive pet or that they just has trust issues, I just have to be very careful as to how I handle them.
The most enjoyable?
When the pets come in and are excited that they are here. They come running up to me and give giving me loving dog kisses.
How do you define success for your business?
Loving what I do makes me successful. I feel like I have done my part when a customer and pet leaves happy.
What are some advantages as well as drawbacks of doing business in this area?
An advantage is, as all of the local groomers say, there are plenty of pets to go around. A drawback would be in the colder months when business is a little slower, some people don't want their pets groomed when it is cold out.
What sets you apart from your competitors?
In my business I have it set up so that the pets can be picked up as soon as they are done instead of all being dropped off at the beginning of the day and all are picked up at the end of the day. I schedule the appointments throughout the day and I am open six days a week, Sunday through Friday. There are times that a customer will call with an emergency and my schedule has some flexibility so I will try to fit them in the same day.
What advice would you give to someone trying to enter your field of work?
My advice is to take some classes or do an apprenticeship somewhere. Having a lot of patience and a love for all pets is essential.
Shop Talk interviews are conducted by Terry Hannum. For information, call The Daily Star at 432-1000, ext. 213, or email email@example.com.