Putting a shine on your coat

Helen Gill is to open a new dog grooming parlour in Worksop called Wagz.  Helen pictured with her dog Bobby. (w101231-2a).
Helen Gill is to open a new dog grooming parlour in Worksop called Wagz. Helen pictured with her dog Bobby. (w101231-2a).

Fancy a new look for the new year?

Maybe a cut and blow dry with all the latest products to make your hair shine? Followed by plenty of cologne to leave you fragrant for the rest of the day?

Well then fetch your lead and take your owner for a walk into Worksop.

Wagz Pet Boutique will be opening soon on Newcastle Avenue - exclusively for dogs.

Pooches will be able to enjoy a thorough pampering session at the hands of dog groomer Helen Gill.

She currently works from home at Swinderby Close, Gateford, where the garage has been converted into a grooming parlour, and is looking forward to opening the salon at the beginning of next month.

“After I’ve clipped them and bathed them I like to spray them all over with cologne, especially round the tail so that when they wag it the scent is wafted around,” she said.

“Then I’ll give them a spray of dog perfume or after shave so that they go back to their owner smelling all nice and lovely.”

“I think that’s one of the treats of getting your dog back from a grooming parlour.”

Helen, 31, is a committed animal lover after growing up with dogs and horses.

She and husband Scott, 33, have a ten-year-old Golden Retriever called Esme and a three-year-old King Charles Spaniel called Bobby.

Together with their three children, Harrison, eight, Harley, four, and Gracie, 17 months, it makes for a full house.

They also have five acres of land near Whitwell where they keep a horse, rabbits and chickens.

Helen said: “I’ve always loved animals and I started helping out with dog grooming when I was 13. I did it up to the age of 20 and got qualifications but then I worked in banking for ten years with the Alliance and Leicester and then Lloyds TSB.”

“It was while I was on maternity leave that I decided I would like to get back into dog grooming.”

Helen also found she was suffering from an ear disease which has left her needing hearing aids. This made it difficult to continue with her bank work so she decided the time was right to follow her dream.

She fell lucky when she popped into another dog grooming parlour to ask about a refresher course and was told they needed someone to help out for six weeks.

“I got straight back into it, it was just like riding a bike. After that I decided to work from home. When I get the boutique I will be able to do more on the retail side as well. I’ll be selling the products like the perfumes and aftershaves, which are £15 a bottle, diamante collars and designer dogs’ clothes like Barbour jackets.”

“I want it to be high end because I don’t think there is anywhere else like that round here.”

Helen grooms about 15 dogs a week at the moment but is expecting that to rise to ten a day at the salon.

Grooming can take anything from one to three hours, depending on the type of dog. Popular breeds for regular grooming are Labradoodles and Standard Poodles.

“The amount of time depends on the amount of scissoring. I don’t just run the clippers over them because that can ruin their coats, especially with the wiry-haired breeds like Border Terriers.”

“I hand clip them, even though it takes ages, because otherwise their coats can turn grey.”

Helen uses Jean Peau natural products from Holland which are gentle on the skin.

Helen will also bet getting a licence for microchipping by mid-February.

She can be contacted on 509064.