May 23, 2011 § 42 Comments
With the weather warming up and Maple sending us signs of discontent that her coat has gotten too fluffy for her liking, we decided it was time for a good trim. The last grooming session (which also happened to be ours and Maple’s first experience) was one of utter shock. Maple walked out of the salon as naked as a piglet. Having learnt from our previous mistake, we now know not to wait until Maple’s hair gets matted and out-of-control before sending her for a groom.
We booked an appointment at Bark & Bubbles, which we discovered while perusing a local pets forum. Bark & Bubbles is located off of Jalan Bukit Merah, just minutes away from IKEA and Queensway Shopping Centre. The location suits us nicely since we live in the West of Singapore.
Recounting the first experience we had at a grooming salon, I felt a little nervous about what we would encounter at Bark & Bubbles. Upon entering Bark & Bubbles, however, I felt a sense of ease. I can’t quite place my finger on it—perhaps it was the cleanliness of the salon, the clutter-free decor, the calmness of the four-legged customers waiting to be groomed, or the pint-sized Toy Poodle named Toffee who greeted us with such authority for a small little dogster.
Toffee’s owner, Joette, is the proprietor of Bark & Bubbles. Having worked in the banking industry for fifteen years, Joette decided to leave her profession to pursue a longtime passion for pets. As a proud owner of two Toy Poodles and two Cocker Spaniels, Joette became a certified groomer. It was at the grooming school that Joette met Megumi, a former fashion designer. Both Joette and Megumi provide grooming services at Bark & Bubbles, which has been in operation for five years.
We spoke with Joette about our preferred style for Maple and she was patient to listen to both of our differing views—we eventually settled on a look for the munchkin. As usual, we also requested that these two common procedures not be performed on Maple: anal glands expression and ear-hair plucking. We didn’t expect the waiting time to be two hours and needed to make our way to a pre-arranged a meeting that couldn’t be cancelled. Thankfully, Joette allowed Maple to stay with her in the salon until our meeting ended later that afternoon. Feeling comforted that Maple was in good hands, we left the salon to run our errands.
When the time came for us to pick-up Maple, our eyes beamed at the sight of her. Heeeeere’s Maple!
What a pretty gal—we LOVE the little red bandana that Maple was wearing.
There was a lot of oohing and aahing as we all gushed over Maple’s new look. It was clear, however, that Maple was tired. Here she is giving us a sulky face (totally understandable, of course)…
The cost of the full grooming was S$45, which seems to be the average in Singapore for a toy breed like Maple. We left the salon feeling like we made a good choice. It was only that evening, however, that we noticed a couple of glitches. One glitch was the scissoring work around Maple’s ears and muzzle—some unevenness here and there (I’ll probably touch it up a bit in these next few days). The other glitch is a little more worrisome and I wish I had inspected Maple closely before leaving the salon. We specifically requested that the hair in Maple’s inner-ears not be plucked. When I examined Maple’s ears at home, however, there was significantly less hair than before. I’m unable to tell what method was used for the hair removal, but Maple’s ears have a noticeably reddish hue and the irritation is causing her to scratch her ears more often than usual.
Will we be returning to Bark & Bubbles? It’s a tough call—we really adore Maple’s new do and would like to think that we’ve found her a suitable groomer. Ultimately, however, it is our hope to one day groom Maple on our own—I know several dog owners who are already doing this for their four-legged friends, and I am so impressed. Until that day comes, we’ll have to depend on professional groomers to help us in this department. So, we’ve created a list of things to remember the next time we make a trip to the grooming salon. If anything, hopefully this might help other newbies like us 😀