2 September 2022

Canberra dog owners sniff out the royal treatment for their pooches at WOOOF salon

| Katrina Condie
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Dog in bath

The crisp new salon has been welcomed by fussy pups. Photo: WOOOF.

The demand for dog grooming services has gone through the roof, with dog ownership growing to 6.5 million across Australia as people sought the comfort of a furry companion during the COVID lockdowns.

After becoming frustrated with the availability of grooming services for their own dogs, the Heacock family opened WOOOF Grooming on The Lawns in Manuka in November 2021.

“All the established salons and home-based operators were stretched with long appointment wait times, and some had even closed their books to new customers,” Frederica Heacock said.

“We also had continuous bad experiences at the ‘big-box’ dog grooming salons, so we opened WOOOF to set a new standard and approach for an industry that was stretched to the max and in need of change.”

While there’s plenty of mobile dog washing trailers offering convenient dog washing and clipping, Frederica says WOOOF is the only Canberra salon providing a premium grooming service focused on coat and skin health.

“You can see, feel and smell the difference after only one groom using high quality, natural products, specialist washing and drying techniques and expert precision grooming,” she said.

“It’s very satisfying for us to see those cheeky little bottoms bounce out the door – the dogs, not the owners that is!”

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The family has three dogs of their own, and Frederica says seeing the difference a great grooming experience can make is what she loves most about the business.

“Dogs are important members of the family who bring us a lot of happiness, so we make sure WOOOF offers a welcoming, friendly and happy environment so the dogs feel the love in return,” she said.

“We’ve had so many clients tell us their dog had the best groom they’ve ever had and that’s testimony to the great team we have looking after them and the high-quality products that are transforming the condition of the coat and skin.”

During lockdowns, our pets have become even bigger parts of our lives, and many may have developed attachment issues and anxiety when left alone or with a carer.

To avoid additional stress for the dogs, WOOOF schedules their appointments carefully to minimise the time the dogs are in the salon and away from their families.

“We do our best to make sure the dogs are happy and relaxed, so we avoid unnecessary and outdated practices like caging dogs for long periods of time,” Frederica said.

“You can see the difference in a dog that has received a warm gentle bath, conditioning treatment and a hand dry by an experienced groomer. And if a dog is super anxious, we’ll dry them with a Dyson Supersonic which is the quietest dryer on the planet.

“It’s great to see senior and anxious dogs that come in shaking with nerves, sitting calmly on the grooming table, wagging their tails and then leaving happy.”

Dog groomer

The experienced groomers at WOOOF salon share their happiness with their four-legged clients. Photo: WOOOF.

The owners are committed to continuous education and inspiring their team with regular training and mentorship by one of Australia’s most awarded master groomers.

“Our commitment to continuous improvement ensures our experienced team remains inspired and dedicated to providing a unique experience that prioritises the safety, health and wellbeing of the dogs,” Frederica said.

Whether it’s a longer cool shag or a sleek shave down to avoid dreadlocks, dogs leave WOOOF looking fabulous.

“The grooming style depends on what the client wants to achieve, what’s manageable for them to maintain and what suits the dog’s breed and personality,” Frederica said.

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The groomers’ health and the environment is a priority at WOOOF, so the salon is kept pristine and kitted out with the latest equipment, processes and natural products.

“We work exclusively with the highest quality natural product range on the market to ensure we achieve a really healthy deep clean, with no synthetic fragrances or chemicals that could potentially cause harm to a dog’s skin and coat,” Frederica explained.

The natural WOOOF shampoo range combines high-quality therapeutic-grade essential oils and is designed to deep clean a greasy coat at home in the shower, garden or at the beach.

Some clients head to the salon for a weekly wash, while others check in every six to eight weeks for their regular groom, but because they use all natural products, you can wash your dog as often as required without damaging their skin or coat.

The salon offers a complimentary meet and greet where they discuss any specific concerns or special needs, and develop a grooming plan for your dog. There’s also a Puppy Program that helps owners learn how to brush and maintain their new puppy’s coat and prepare them for a lifetime of positive grooming experiences.

To request a booking, head to the WOOOF website and fill out a booking request.


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