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Pets get ‘family-style’ treatment at new grooming salon

By Carlee Lammers, Staff Writer
KENNY KEMP | Putnam Review
Charlie gets the full treatment by Flawless Pet Salon owner and Scott Depot resident Gail Shabdue.
A colorful waiting area serves owners and pets at Flawless Pet Salon.
Flawless Pet Salon is located at 2667 Winfield Road near St. Albans.

When clients bring their pets to Flawless Pet Salon, Gail Shabdue doesn’t see it as just another dog to groom. The way she sees it, she said clients are entrusting her with a member of their family.

Shabdue, who has been certified in grooming for years, opened the pet salon near St. Albans in June.

The Scott Depot resident brings with her more than 30 years of experience in the industry — and a passion for the job.

“I’ve always loved animals,” she said. “I do very well with animals. I was never really a social butterfly. I just relate to them better. I realized I had a knack for doing it.”

The salon, which is located on Winfield Road next to the Red Line Diner, offering a variety of grooming and salon services for pets.

Grooming services include a bath — including a chemical-free shampoo and skin assessment — ear cleaning, nail clipping, anal gland expression and teeth brushing. Grooming services start at $35.

She uses a bathtub with a Hydrosurge Pet Bathing system that puts the organic soap and water on the dog’s skin all at the same time for a deep clean. She also uses non-heated air dryers for dogs to prevent dehydration or skin irritation.

Shabdue also offers teeth-cleaning services and hair-coloring services for pets.

A large part of her services also include educating clients about best practices and helping check the health of the animal. Throughout her years of working in the industry, she’s been able to recognize common oral, anal and ear health problems in dogs and checks each dog she sees.

“There are things that I know from experience and see. When they get ear infections, if they have a bad tooth because I brush their teeth, if they need their teeth cleaned. Owners don’t go home at the end of a day and open their dog’s mouth to look,” she said. “To me, it’s all about the pet. It’s not about the bottom dollar. I do it for the health of the animal.”

Shabdue recommends owners take their dogs to be groomed every eight to 12 weeks from the time they turn three months old.

For many pets, the first visit to a groomer can be an overwhelming experience, so Shabdue said she works with owners to help calm a dog’s nerves on that first visit.

“The clippers, the noise. It’s a lot for them the first time,” she said. “It’s like taking your kid to the doctor. You don’t take your kid and just leave it. You’re there with them and then next time they know what to expect.”

Flawless Pet Salon is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and by appointment during off hours.

She said she recommends clients take time to meet with potential groomers to learn about their facility, the products they use and the services they offer before scheduling an appointment.

The salon only accepts cash, and is located at 2667 Winfield Road near St. Albans.

For more information, call 304-419-4115 or like Flawless Pet Salon on Facebook.

Reach Carlee Lammers at, 304-348-1230 or follow @CarleeLammers on Twitter.


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