Beauty care for dogs

Mumbai, September 18:

Aromatherapy, oil massages, bathing and shampooing, it is no longer a dog’s life for Mumbai’s canines with an exclusive salon just for their care. Run by two women in the western Mumbai suburb of Bandra, the salon makes its purpose very clear to anyone who visits the place, with a board that says, “Human beings not allowed beyond this point.” Gauri Keskar and Urmila Dabholkar established the salon in 2000 as Disney’s Pet Salon. They worked hard to create awareness about pet grooming and health. “It was very difficult initially as people never thought on the lines of a separate salon for pets,” said Gauri, a mathematics graduate from the city’s Ramnarain Ruia College. “Moreover, no equipment was available in India and everything had to be imported from abroad as the concept of professional pet grooming was alien to India. It more or less is, even now,” she added. Gauri and Urmila met when the former was working with a veterinarian in 1998-99. Urmila was then with the People for Ethical Treatment of Animals. Their common passion, animals, fused and they hit it off very well. Like typical businesswomen, they turn finicky when it came to talking about their investments and gingerly reveal they charge anywhe-re between Rs 400 Indian Currency (IC), for a simple bath, to Rs 1,000 IC for other elaborate services. Today they handle 200 to 225 pets, including 10-15 cats a month.