Ease Your Pet’s Anxiety At The Groomers

Some dogs don’t mind being bathed, clipped, and primped but other dogs become nervous, want to jump off the table, and run. If your dog tries to do the latter, there are ways to help make grooming time a little less nerve-wracking. It’s important to take some preventative steps to address their anxiety before it escalates into a total panic attack or manifests as aggression.

Here are 5 tips to reduce fear at the groomer

  1. Make the car ride fun – if your dog only associates the car ride with going to things that are scary like the groomer or vet, mix it up a little. Take small trips to the dog park and counter condition your dog’s fear with praise and rewards. Show your dog that not every car ride means it is followed up with strangers poking and prodding and even if does, your dog will get a reward for getting out of the car, for walking into the office, and afterwards when getting back in the car.
  2. Get your dog used to being touched – if your dog is weary of having his/her ears and paws touched, work with your dog at home to get him/her used to being handled. You can try using words and touch together to let your dog know what area is about to be touched. “Ears” and “Paw” a second before touching and a little moving around will help your dog understand as well as a reward immediately afterwards. Go slowly and remember to make all training sessions fun.
  3. Make the groomer a fun place to go – See if your groomer is ok with you stopping by when you don’t have an appointment so your dog learns it’s not always going to be a “scary place.” Pair the visit with fun things like a little play time in the parking lot, treats from the staff, and use the visits as a way to accustom your dog to the sounds, smells, and sights of the place.
  4. Look for ways to make it less stressful – If your dog hates being picked up, see if your groomer has stairs or a ramp that your dog can walk up to get onto the table. Maybe your groomer will even consider grooming your dog while sitting on the floor. If your dog hates having his/her face washed, a wet cloth could be an alternative to the whole shampoo and shower routine on the muzzle and around the eyes. All this can help reduce the stress levels in your dog.
  5. Worse comes to worse use a soft muzzle – If your dog tries to mouth or gives warning nips to the groomer, a muzzle may be necessary. Muzzle training can reduce the need for other types of restraint and keep everyone safe. However, try the other tactics first as muzzles can sometimes make a dog more anxious.

Have other tips? Share them with us!

Image from Doggy Clips

Pet Stores and Services Around Ottawa, Ontario

Ottawa, Ontario, sure isn’t short of pet stores and services! There are many different options to shop for holistic and healthy pet foods, as well as specialty businesses for things like aquariums, grooming and training.

Bark & Fitz

Bark & Fitz is a Canadian chain store that sells all types of holistic and healthy foods for dogs, and there is one store in Ottawa. Aside from foods, they also sell gear, treats, toys and gifts. These stores even have bakeries that bake dog biscuits from human-grade ingredients.

The Pampered Pet

The Pampered Pet sells healthy foods for pets, such as a full line of raw diets for cats and dogs. They also have grooming facilities, and sell assorted pets, like birds, small animals, fish and reptiles. The Pampered Pet has cats that hang out in the store while customers shop.

Natural Pet Foods

Natural Pet Foods has one of its locations in Westboro Village, Ottawa. They are a family business that sells cat and dog items without any animal by-products, chemical preservatives or artificial coloring or flavoring. They look for unique items to put in their stock, and support local artisans. This store also offers grooming. There are also dog training sessions, for puppies, basic and advanced levels.

Critter Jungle

Critter Jungle is yet another Ottawa option to shop for natural and holistic pet foods and other products. They sell things not only for cats and dogs, but also for birds, reptiles, small animals and fish.

Wag Pet Shop

Wag Pet Shop describes itself as “a posh shop for spoiled pets.” They host social events for dogs and their owners, like puppy parties and Greyhound gatherings, along with other interesting special events, like educational seminars. This place also has a great selection of top-quality pet foods.


Marinescape is a saltwater aquarium store that sells many necessary products for home ecosystems.

Best Friends Dog Training

Best Friends Dog Training offers a wide array of dog classes, such as puppy kindergarten, different levels of obedience, scent, agility, tricks and more.

Dawn of a New Day

Dawn of a New Day is a lovely salon for dog and cat grooming and styling in downtown Ottawa. They also sell some retail products for shoppers, like stain removal kits, boots for dogs, tooth and oral care, bio-degradable waste bags and other interesting items.

Pet Stores Around Southern Illinois

There is a variety of pet stores around Southern Illinois, that range from chain stores, to groomers, to specialty stores to bulk stores.

Fish Tales Pet Shop

Marion, Illinois

This is a family owned pet shop in the Illinois Central Mall, which has been open 17 years. They even have an activity room for parties and pottery activities for kids, which anyone can reserve.

The Barking Lot

Marion, Illinois

This store claims to have the largest puppy selection within 150 miles. It is privately owned, and not affiliated with the other pet stores in the area. It is a newer store that opened in 2008. Click here to watch their commercial. Their puppies are exercised daily.

Affordable Grooming

Marion, Illinois

This place offers pet grooming services for less expensive prices. They also sell brushes, flea control products, tick control products and shampoos.

Squak-N-Talk Pet Shop

Mount Vernon, Illinois

This store sells birds, fish, reptiles, small animals and supplies for all of them. Closed Sundays.


Petco Animal Supplies

Carbondale, Illinois

This chain store has practically anything you would be looking for. They sell all types of brands of pet food. They sell products for cats, dogs, birds, amphibians, reptiles, small animals, freshwater and saltwater fish. It is located in the University Mall Shopping District.

D&M Feeds

Carterville, Illinois

This practical store offers bird food, cat food, dog food, pet supplies, fertilizers, horse feed, apparel and more. They have been open for thirty years. Their pet food tends to be in bulk, but is cheaper than most other pet stores.

Lodge of the Four Pets

Pickneyville, Illinois

This place is mainly a grooming and boarding facility for cats and dogs. The kennels have air conditioning for summer and heat for winter, and they board all types of dogs and cats. The grooming services range from baths, ear cleaning, nail trimming, hot oil treatment, flea treatment and special shampoo treatment. They also sell grooming supplies, along with dog food, brushes, combs, collars and toys.

Dillinger’s Feed Store

Carbondale, Illinois

This is a practical store with a good selection. They offer many types of feed, litter and bedding, and a good selection of dog food.

Barb’s Groom Room

Tamaroa, Illinois

This is mostly a pet grooming service place, but the lady there also does boarding. They sell some products, like brushes, flea control products, tick control products and shampoos.

Great Pet Stores in Miami, Florida

Miami is a hotspot for visitors from everywhere. People flock here from all around for the beautiful beaches, great food and exquisite shopping. The pet stores in Miami offer an infinite amount of pet products and activities, from luxury products to bird cages to gourmet food to grooming to professional photography.

Dog Bar

The Dog Bar is a superb luxury pets store that has been open since 1996. There are two locations in Miami’s hottest shopping areas, Lincoln Road and the Miracle Mile. It is open seven days a week until late hours, and offers top of the line, beautiful pet products. Dog Bar is dedicated to the well-being of dogs and cats all over, and seeks to educate the public about feeding their pets the proper foods. They sell products like scented spritzes and biodegradable puppy training pads.

Atlantis Pet Shop

This shop will be hosting a grand reopening sale on September 26 and 27!

This store opened in 2000, and sells an assortment of exotic animals like birds, fish, sugar gliders, bunnies and reptiles. They also stock wonderful pet toys, food and treats. They are located in the heart of Miami Beach.

Simbad’s Birds and Pets

This shop is committed to serving the best bird playgyms, grooming and health products, cages and other bird products. They also ship throughout the nation (free for over $250!)

South Beach Pet Shop

This shop has been around for fourteen years, and also sells microchipped puppies and does grooming. They have professional dog grooming and luxury boarding as well.

My Cute Puppies

poodThis store sells breeds of puppies, but also offers a variety of nice dog products, such as leashes, shampoo, beds, food, brushes, sweaters and chew toys. It is located around Olympia Heights.

Dog Bag Cafe

This shop and cafe offers a bunch of great things for dogs. Every Saturday morning, they host a “Doggie Brunch,” where your dog can socialize with other dogs, and you can drink coffee and socialize with other dog people! They have a very stocked menu of organic, preservative-free dog food that includes chicken and rice dinners, sirloin and pasta dinners, birthday cakes and even alcohol-free dog beer or wine (seriously). Prices are a bit high for this selection.

Doggy Studio and Boutique

This studio offers professional pet photography by Shelley Guberek, who has appeared in Dog Fancy magazine. She takes many wonderful, well-let and well-exposed dog photos, usually against white or black backgrounds. There is also a store that offers stylish leashes and dog bowls.