The Straight Poop:

The Pooch Parlor

By Drake the Dog
Reader Pet Columnist

Where am I taking my humans today?

The holidays will soon be here, and it’s time to get all duded up—which means cleaning up. According to the Missus, this trip today is not an option. Black Beauty, the new ride, is spiffed up, ready for boarding, and we are off to The Pooch Parlor located at 210 Triangle Dr., Ste. D, in Ponderay. On the way, I borrowed the Mister’s cell and called my BFF, Grady (a 9-year-old chocolate Lab). He said, “Drake, dude, I’ve been going to the Pooch Parlor for years. You will love this doggie spa day more than going to see Dr. ZaBarko.”

The Pooch Parlor team: Top (left to right): Kem Tonseth, Crystal McLeish, Julia Baillod, Julia Baillod. Bottom: DuAnn Chambers, Santa Claus and Drake.

The Pooch Parlor team: Top (left to right): Kem Tonseth, Crystal McLeish, Julia Baillod, Julia Baillod. Bottom: DuAnn Chambers, Santa Claus and Drake.

Then, I Googled a few things about fur baby clean up:

•Dogs need regular baths every one to three months. Different breeds, coats and lifestyles require various degrees of K-9 coiffing.

•If the last time I enjoyed a bath in was in a kiddie pool this summer, it has been too long.

•Unlike my kitty sister, Mika, I can’t do my own maintenance.

•When the Missus detects eau d’canine because the Mister has allowed me play in my favorite swimming hole at the lake, and as I waft through the door smelling of unidentifiable substances, it’s bath time!

•Freezing hose water showers are only appreciated by pooches on warm sunny days.

•Time for the annual spring bath? Right! However, if your furry babe has been dirty since October, it’s time. Remember: Pig Pen needed a bath every season!

So now that the factoids are out of the way, it’s knick-knack-paddywack, give-this-guy-a-bath time! We arrived at the Pooch Parlor, a full service salon for pampered pets. These guys are the only grooming school which is licensed and bonded through the Board of Education in the state of Idaho. Barkin’ good credentials, right? The Pooch Parlor is owned and operated by DuAnn and Mike Chambers, who have been married for 22 years, share the love of dogs and have been in business since 2000. Mike has a construction company on the side.However, he does not build doggie digs. Go figure!

They have no human children at home—only a mini Schnauzer, Greta; a standard poodle, Monte and a 7-year-old Rottweiler cross. They are in business “to provide a clean, safe, fun family environment for dogs and their humans, where integrity, customer service and professionalism are held to the highest possible standard.”

We were greeted with hugs and love from the dogs and humans. What a cool family relaxing atmosphere! LuAnn told us “that the love of family is the tool for the basis of what we do here,” and she invited the family to get in the act!

Taking advantage of this self-service activity, the Mister and Missus donned their rubber aprons and gloves and held my leash as I stepped into one of the bathing stations. I felt like a rock star! They showered me with love and warm water—ohhhhh, it felt so relaxing! Then they massaged me with shampoo and a really cool scrubber. Let the shedding begin! (The Mister was chanting, “Bye-bye, Dyson”). The next step was a conditioning massage and rinse. The duo brushed my teeth, cleaned my ears and dried me with warm towels. Spahhhhhhhhhhh!

Here’s the good news: The staff cleans everything up! Now I know the psychology of successful dog bathing! My energy and personality traits are a mirror of my humans. Hmm, I wonder if the Mister liked baths when he was a kid? I know the Missus loves to spa!

Did you know that there is a doggie drive-through window for dogs under 20 pounds here? (I didn’t qualify; too many holiday treats). Also, they offer nail grooming, teeth scaling and brushing, in addition to a K-9 day care and a pet boutique. After you’re all beautified, you can pose for complimentary portraits with your peeps or Santa.

So, go get spiffed up for the holidays; it feels so good. Then you will be ready to do the rub-a-dub-tub gymnastics routine on your favorite carpet, and if allowed, run outside and breakdance in the snow (or dirt).  Catch me if you can, or I’ll pose with Santa! The Missus told the Mister, “There’s no better smell to me than that of a freshly bathed dog—except, perhaps a freshly bathed infant. Remember those days?”

One piece of advice: Don’t let me near the hair care aisle in my favorite pet store. Once I start highlighting, there’s no stopping me!

Happy holidays, hugs, slobbery dog kisses … and SPAHHHHHHH days!

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