Sign In

Pawfect Pets

October 8, 2020

For Shearly Pawfect Pets Founder Michelle Carpin, grooming is much more just grooming — it’s a form of art, a mission that includes education and gaining an animal’s trust.

The full-service grooming business on South Michael Street in St. Marys began with a soft opening in August 2017, Carpin said.

Carpin, who lives in Weedville and has been grooming for 12 years, has two dogs of her own, Bentley and Penny.

Originally, Carpin said she wanted to go to school for horse training, and considered attending veterinary school. She also worked at The Dog House in Reynoldsville, learning much of what she knows from Founder and longtime groomer Kathie Simcox. Carpin also has experience in at-home mobile services for dogs, such as basic nail trimmings and clean ups.

There are many things Carpin enjoys about the business, including helping pet owners notice possible underlying issues. SPP refers many dogs to the vet, she said, which is part of the reason she got into grooming.

A big part of the mission is also education. People may not know common information, such as it can be damaging to shave a dog’s plush/double coat and irregulate their body temperature, Carpin added.

“I love making dogs more comfortable, and sending a finished product out the door,” she said.

Carpin also uses holistic-health products, with all grooming products being natural. With a background in nutrition, she has many “dog food conversations” with pet owners.

Grooming is also a mental and emotional business for Carpin – she gives dogs who have been “blacklisted” by other groomers a chance.

“A lot of groomers don’t have the patience or experience (it takes) working with difficult dogs,” she said.

These dogs who tend to have issues are often just misunderstood, Carpin says, and take longer to trust the groomer and decrease the dog’s anxiety.

It’s also best to start bringing a dog as a puppy, Carpin says, getting them used to routinely visiting the groomer at a young age. Soon enough, the dog and the groomer become friends.

Grooming also means knowing a dog’s boundaries and reinforcing good behavior, Carpin said. She recalls not being able to touch some dogs with a comb, and now they are excited and happy to visit the shop.

Carpin’s two full-time employees, Taylor Ehrensberger and Alexis Lowe, are training to be groomers — one currently bathes and blow dries the dogs, and one blow dries and brushes, she said.

“When you’re grooming, you have to have an eye for art,” she said, adding it takes skill to work with the skeletal structure of the dog and sculpting the different types of coats.

SPP also offers cat grooming, which many groomers do not, she added.

The shop was closed for nine weeks due to COVID-19, Carpin said. SPP is offering curbside services, too, which includes pet owners being able to pull up to the back door, as long as the dog isn’t a “runner” or fear-aggressive.

Carpin says she loves having her business downtown, buying products from other businesses and supporting one another. Her goals include expanding the shop’s retail section.

Register Your Dog

  • Most Recent News

    Firefighters battling California wildfires visited by Kerith the therapy dog

    Battling wildfires can take an emotional and physical toll on firefighters, but a two-year-old golden retriever has come to rescue, relieving stress and providing comfort to firefighters on the front lines. Kerith is a certified crisis response therapy animal through a nonprofit organization, Pet Partners. Kerith and her handler, Heidi Carman, started volunteering at MarinHealth […]

    Read more

    Big Dogs Need Owners

    When the shutdown orders took full effect, it became nearly impossible to find a small dog available for adoption as Southlanders sought furry companions. In many Southland shelters, only larger breeds remained available for adoption. Now Los Angeles Animal Service is touting the joys of big dogs while offering discounted adoption fees for larger breeds […]

    Read more

    Service Dog Walkathon

    On Saturday, October 3, hundreds of walkers from across 15 states joined the path to bettering the world for children with autism and their families as part of BluePath Service Dogs’ fourth annual walkathon. The family-friendly fundraiser – this year held virtually – raised more than $120,000 to further BluePath’s mission of providing autism service […]

    Read more

    Service Dog In The Marching Band

    In a year that is anything but normal, the Jones College Maroon Typhoon Marching Band has welcomed its first known service dog member this fall. Laurie, a 3-year-old golden retriever, is baritone saxophone player Sara-Beth McKellar’s service dog. The Vicksburg native was diagnosed with epilepsy as a sophomore in high school after her first seizure. […]

    Read more

    Church Blesses Animals

    St. Mary’s Church of the Immaculate Conception in Port Jervis hosted a special outdoor service last Sunday afternoon to bless the community’s pets, animals and other living creatures. In keeping with current pandemic rules, pet owners wore masks, remained distant, and took part in praying for dogs, cats, turtles, and other pets and animals around […]

    Read more

    Police Welcome New Canine

    After the unexpected passing of longtime Police Service Dog Zeus earlier this week, Kingston Police are welcoming a new member to the Canine Unit. Police Service Dog Bask, also known as K9-8, is a Dutch Shepherd and Belgium Malinois mix, and will be patrolling the streets of Kingston with his handler Constable Jeff Dickson. Bask […]

    Read more