Pet Styles by Amanda brings the ’doo to the dog
By Chelsea Davis
Pet Styles by Amanda is a full-service salon for pets, but unlike traditional grooming services, this one is mobile. Amanda Cantrell, the owner of the mobile grooming business, set up shop in a van, and travels to the pet owner’s home or business.
“Anything you can do in a shop, you can do in our van,” Cantrell said. “It’s just me in a big, white, Ford Econoline van, decorated in pink and dogs.”
Cantrell received her grooming certification seven years ago from the Diamond Cut Dog Grooming School, in Medina, Ohio. Before the pet grooming business called her name, she was working at Staples, but always knew a career with animals was inevitable.
“I was tired of working at Staples, Cantrell said. “I grew up around animals and showed horses, and whatnot. An animal field was a natural step for me.”
It was Cantrell’s experiences with her own pets and their groomers that started her on this path.
“I had pets at home I was taking to get groomed and I wasn’t satisfied,” Cantrell said. “The grooming wasn’t done in a way I wanted, and sometimes they weren’t even clean.”
Cantrell explained she tried to groom her pets, but quickly realized this wasn’t a job for amateurs. Then, she made the decision to go to grooming school.
Before making the decision to go mobile over two years ago, Cantrell first worked in a traditional pet grooming shop. It was there she noticed not all animals are made for in-shop grooming – be it size, temperament or age. That was one of the biggest reasons she decided to take her show on the road.
“There are a couple of reasons I went mobile,” Cantrell said. “It’s a really great option for dogs who don’t do well in shops due to health, age, disabilities, nervousness. It’s also a really great option for owners who can’t necessarily get out of the house. Maybe they’re homebound, too busy, have a lot of kids, or are part of a multi-dog family.”
This mobile option not only saves the pet owners some time and headache, but also provides a lower-stress atmosphere for Cantrell.
“There are no dogs constantly barking all day,” Cantrell said. “I get to hear the birds outside and this works really great for that.”
Cantrell also enjoys the stronger connection she feels is formed by doing the grooming services at someone’s home.
“It gives me a little more one-on-one time for the dogs and it gives me a better connection to the owners as well,” Cantrell said. “Some are very good friends and I get to see their newborn babies before anyone else, because I come to their home, before they can really go out and about.”
While Cantrell mainly focuses on dogs, she is a member of both the National Dog Groomer Association (NDGAA) and the National Cat Groomers Institute of America (NCGIA), and takes on all pet grooming projects. She’s groomed her fair share of cats, although admitted it’s harder to groom a cat with no one helping her. She has even groomed rabbits and guinea pigs.
“You really need a well-behaved cat to groom them by yourself,” Cantrell said. “It can get dangerous quickly with cats, and it’s good to have a helper.”
Pet Styles by Amanda offers a wide range of grooming options. There are the basics: bath, brush and a little trim, as well as some wilder options such as feather extensions, hair dying and blueberry facials. Cantrell admits the blueberry facials et al, are actually very common, but she has received a few odd requests.
“I had a lady ask for her cat to be trimmed like a pomeranian,” Cantrell said. “It was a little weird.”
Cantrell also offers spa services: facials, dying, teeth brush, nail treatments and an aromatherapy paw soak. She mentioned they actually get quite a few moisturizing treatment requests in the winter due to the animals’ dry skin.
Pet Styles also prides itself on providing a full range of shampoos for your animal’s needs.
“If your dog has sensitive skin or allergies, we can do something with that,” Cantrell said. “As well, our general use shampoos are very high end and are a sugar base, which provides excellent bathing without a lot of preservatives and harsh chemicals.”
Not only is Pet Styles there to provide excellent and full-range spa services, but it answers any questions a pet owner may have.
“There are no silly questions,” Cantrell said. “Groomers run across a lot of things. While we’re not vets or trainers or behaviorists, we can definitely point you in the right direction and get your pet the help they need, in a timely fashion.”
Although her business is generating a lot of buzz, you won’t see Cantrell shelling out big bucks on advertising any time soon. She receives most of her customers by word of mouth, referrals and occasionally partnering with companies, like Moochie and Co. down at The Greene.
“I’ve done very little advertising,” Cantrell said. “Probably less than $300 total. I did do the Furry Scurry, held by the Dayton Humane Society, the AKC Responsible Dog Day and the Canine Carnival in Miamisburg; basically public events where I could go out and take my van out.”
Cantrell’s reputation is strong in the Greater Dayton area, and she hopes it will continue to grow. She hopes to eventually have a second vehicle and groomer.
When you come to Pet Styles by Amanda – or rather, when she comes to you – Cantrell just wants the animal and its owner to be happy, since she’s happy to provide this great alternative.
“As a first time customer I want your dog to have the best haircut they’ve gotten and be a really happy dog,” Cantrell said. “They’re usually very excited to see me a next time.”
Pet Styles by Amanda is a full-service mobile salon for all pets. Owner Amanda Cantrell accepts all breeds of dogs and offers large dog (70+ pounds) grooming services. Pet Styles operates in the Greater Dayton area, especially Oakwood, Kettering and Centerville. For more information, please call 937.424.6026 or visit facebook.com/PetStylesbyAmanda.
Reach DCP freelance writer Chelsea Davis at ChelseaDavis @DaytonCityPaper.com.