Pet owners spend big bucks for home grooming services amid pandemic

By Quynh Trang   July 4, 2021 | 05:14 pm PT
Animal lovers do not scrimp when it comes to their pets, and many are willing to pay top dollar for home pet grooming during the Covid-19 outbreak.

At a pet shop on Ly Chinh Thang Street in Saigon's District 3 on Friday afternoon, Nguyen Ngoc Thuy Trang prepares to visit a customer's house to trim, bathe and massage their dogs and cats.
"This whole month the shop has not received customers since many are limiting going outside," she said. "But the demand to take care of dogs and cats at home has increased. There used only around five people asking for this service every day, but now it has increased by six times."


The tools include scissors, trimmers, combs, nail polish, shampoo, and dryer. All items must be disinfected before being taken.


The staff usually split into groups of two to visit a customer’s house.
Trang said customers usually ask for trimming, bathing, nail filing, and massaging, and a visit costs around VND300,000 ($13.09). If the house is more than three kilometers away, customers have to pay an additional VND10,000 per kilometer.


At Vo Chi Dung's house in District 8, about 10 km away from the shop, the two workers explained to the pet owner what they would do before going to work on a dog right in the living room.


Trang said holding a trimmer: "Like this chow chow dog ... It's fur is not long, so it only needs to be trimmed. But I still have to file its nails, trim the hair around its paws and wash it clean."
To safeguard against Covid-19, the staff must wear masks and safety glasses and keep a safe distance from guests.
The cost of the services also depends on the weight of the pet.


A worker bathes and massages the dog in the bathroom.
"Home pet care services make it convenient for customers since they do not have to go out amid the outbreak and can avoid crowded places. However, there is a lack of tools such as bathtubs, tables and chairs... and so not everything is perfect."


After a clean bath, Pham Thanh Mai uses a high-powered dryer to dry the two dogs' hair. This is an indispensable tool when grooming pets at home.


After nearly an hour Dung's two dogs are now cleaner and neater and it cost VND700,000 ($30).
Dung said: "I usually take my dogs to the pet beauty salon once every two weeks. But since I am limiting going out, now I call the staff home to take care for them, ensuring that my pets are always well groomed and in good health."


Besides grooming pets, pet shops also care for dogs and cats when their owners are away for a fee of VND150,000 a day. Most of the people who send their pets to them are on business trips, have returned to their hometowns or are in quarantine.
Nguyen Minh Tuan, 50, of District 8, said: "I have a grandchild who is quarantined after coming in contact with a Covid-19 patient. Since I work all the time and there is no one at home, I have to send the pet to the store for someone to take care of it."

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