With both privacy-loving stars and non-celebrities on his client list, this teen will teach you a thing or two about canine love
At 14 years, Arun Vijay is not just one of the youngest, but also the bravest pet groomers we have come across. Even when surrounded by three aggressive looking Rottweilers at a client’s house, Vijay maintained composure and befriended them with a little help from their owner. This was three years ago when he was just starting out. Today, Vijay is not just an expert at pet grooming, but is also a favourite among celebrity dog owners in the city.
Start from scratch
On his client list are names like Kamal Haasan, Vikram, Vijay and Jai, whose pooches have all been groomed by him. “I visit Kamal sir’s house to brush his three Golden Retrievers, every day,” says the ninth grader from Kumara Rajah Muthiah Higher Secondary School. Vijay started grooming pets at the age of 12 and now works with nearly six dogs a day. Though not formally trained, the young lad worked with a veterinary doctor at his village in Tiruvannamalai, where he learnt various methods to treat dogs in case of an emergency or an accident. Everything he knows about pet grooming — bathing, brushing, nail clipping, hair cleaning and tick spraying — he picked up from city-based pet groomer, Ronnie Anderson.
This teenager is also quite active on Facebook, with more than 100 likes on his page, Arun’s Grooming. Vijay started off grooming for free, but now charges a nominal fee that varies depending on the breed. “I charge Rs 600 for a Saint Bernard and Rs 400 for a Labrador,” says Vijay, who lives with his mother and younger brother. Juggling studies and work, he doesn’t let the pressure get to him. “I groom dogs on weekends or on holidays. If necessary, I do it on weekdays after school,” says Vijay, whose grooming services are not just for pet dogs. The youngster keeps an eye out for the street dogs near his home. In time, he also hopes to start a professional grooming service.
Rs 400 onwards. Details: 9500815522
Mayuri J Ravi