Dog beauty salon: how an immigrant from Russia built a successful grooming business in the USA
Natalia Buslovich is a groomer. For several decades, she has been making pets beautiful. In the USA, with the support of her husband and the help of her daughter, she organized her own business - a mobile beauty salon for dogs. Due to high demand, she has to think about expanding her business. Natalia told her story “Voice of America".
My name is Natalya, I'm a pet hairdresser. Dogs' hair cut since 1986. Three years have passed since I started working in America. I have a wonderful business: here in America, it's called pet groomer.
The name of my salon is Natalia's Pet Beauty Salon. The salon consists of a bus on which I come to clients and work directly in it. It is fully equipped - with warm and hot water, with a table, with electricity.
Of course, coming to customers is a vip service for customers themselves. People do not need to go anywhere, put their dog in a car, drive somewhere, spend time after work or instead of work. Literally an hour - and the dog is ready, and everyone is very happy.
“I think I’m very lucky - I get both service and quality, and a very affordable price compared to local services,” says client Tatyana Tyulyukina. “And then my dog is completely stress free, absolutely positive.”
I was born in Leningrad, now it is St. Petersburg, a beautiful city in Russia, Natalia continues. The first dog in our house appeared in 1980, it was a very long time, I was 12 years old. They brought home a small black lump - it was a small poodle. We ourselves began to look after him: to cut, wash, blow dry - in the haircut it is very important to dry the dog well, pull each hair, then the haircut will be even and beautiful.
Mom began to cut dogs with friends. But she did not know how to find contact and deal with the animal, so I went with her and helped keep the dogs. Just a few months later I tried on my dog - I cut it so that all the neighbors started asking who cut my dog so beautifully. It inspired me so much! I came to the exhibition with this haircut, and the judge asked me: “Who cut your dog?” I replied that I cut it myself. She replied: "You are doing very well."
I began to make very good money, because there were a huge number of customers. It was so wonderful for me in my life, because when I moved to another country, it became my main profession.
We moved to Israel with the whole family in 1991. In those days, very many left Russia for America, for Israel. When we arrived there, I saw the desert. I was very puzzled, who am I going to cut there? Mostly desert dogs ran around - this is a Bedouin breed. There were many immigrants from Russia, they brought with them thoroughbred dogs. And thanks to them I had a job. I worked as a teacher in college, taught dog grooming, I had many graduate students who are now successfully working in Israel. And even my student, when I left this job in college, replaced me.
Now I live in the city of Damascus, America, Maryland. My husband is Russian, who arrived a long time ago and knows English very well, has his own business.
“I come from Kiev, Ukraine,” says Dmitry Tepelboim, a spouse of Natalia. - I came here when my parents decided to emigrate with the whole family. That was in 1989. In the city of Gatesburg, I have a car repair shop. My brother Misha and I do everything except paint work. Business has been 15 years old, and it is pretty easy for us. We never sat without work, from the first day we always had work and we gradually expanded. Business must grow. If it does not grow, then you are doing something wrong. ”
“I met Dima quite by accident, through our mutual friend who lived in Israel and moved to the USA,” Natalya continues. - I thought: what can I write first to interest him? I saw that he was skiing. I wrote to him that I also ride.
“At some point, we met and went together to Budapest. We spent a week together, we liked being together, ”says Dmitry. - I suggested she come to stay and she agreed. He proposed to her, then she left, and returned already with all things. "
I have been living in America since 2015, says Natalya. - When I arrived, I thought at first to get a job. I had no idea how to open a business here if I do not know the language. My husband’s head worked in this area much faster. He looked for all the information about the groomer business and found out that there are mobile groomers. That is, the bus, which is fully equipped as a workshop for dogs, has everything there to come to the client and serve him - to cut the dog, wash it.
We bought a new bus, but it was completely empty inside. Everything inside now, Dima did it yourself.
When I first started, I worked alone. Then my daughter came to me. Her name is Michal, she is 23 years old, she graduated from school in Israel, then the army, moved to me and I introduced her to my work. We ride together, she washes the dogs, I'm resting at that moment. If the client has more than two dogs while she is washing, I can cut the second dog. So we change and time takes much less.
The price now is from $ 70, although I started at 55. All my friends said that I take it very cheaply, but I understood that if I start right away with the local market price, my customers will go to me for a very long time. Therefore, I made the price lower, for six months I gained a base and already told them new prices.
“I suffered here for a very long time, went to various hairdressing salons, and went to New York,” says client Dina Urman. “I couldn’t show dogs because I couldn’t cut them normally.” She arrived and everything was fine. I came to life and my dogs too! She’s only a haircut, she’s a professional. ”
Over the past 3 years, I have 5 to 8 dogs haircut per day, says Natalya. This is hard physical work, I’m looking for an assistant now, because there are many clients and everyone wants to get a service quickly. No one wants to wait 3-4 weeks.
The business model itself: Dima receives calls from customers, determines on which day to put this or that dog, depending on the location where they live, so that there are no large transfers from one dog to another. He already began to understand these issues so much that this, of course, is our common business.
Now we have six adult dogs and four puppies were born. Dima never kept dogs; he had only one cat all his life. It is good that he is not afraid of dogs and he has no allergies to them. Dima gets along wonderfully with them, but I take care of the dogs exclusively. He strokes them, loves and does everything to make it convenient for me to care for them. If we need to go somewhere, he thought that we need to buy a large bus in which we will travel and not think where to leave the dogs. We take them with us. Each dog has its own interest in Dima and they are very happy when he deals with them.
We breed dogs, I have my own kennel, and due to the fact that I go to exhibitions where judges evaluate the quality of my dogs, I can have upscale thoroughbred puppies. Puppies are not cheap, but when compared with the prices of American breeders, I have a little lower. We advertise on the official site of American dog breeding, both Americans and Russians come to watch. The previous puppies were bought by Russian families, they live nearby, and I can serve their dogs.
I go to exhibitions, they need high-class breed dogs. Therefore, I got my dogs in good kennels. Due to the fact that it was easier for me to speak Russian and I knew many Russian breeders, I brought them mainly from Moscow. Although now I already have a generation of dogs of my breeding - the dogs that I had born and which I left for myself, trained. They go to exhibitions with me. For the exhibition, they must walk, stand, and nothing more is required of them.
On the subject: How chewing gum, ice cream or toothpaste can kill your dog
When there are diplomas, victories at exhibitions, it’s a big plus to advertise your business. I want to open a school to give people the opportunity to earn money - I think this is a very good business. I would like my students to work well and say: "We studied with Natalia." When there is a good student next to me, I will see that there is potential, that he will work great, I will take him for myself.
We came to the conclusion that it was time to open a stationary hairdresser. I understand that I still have the potential and the opportunity to work more than I can work on the bus. We decided to open it in our house so that I could take workers to the hairdresser and put on the bus to serve customers.
I can afford to take large dogs for service, and give people the opportunity not to look for hairdressers because of my refusal, but to contact me.
Why do I like hairdressing, like to cut dogs? Firstly, I like to mess with the hair, comb it and cut it. Secondly, this process brings joy to everyone - the owners are happy, I am happy.
Work takes an hour, and you already see the result. It is very nice and interesting.
stdClass Object ([term_id] => 1 [name] => Miscellaneous [taxonomy] => category [slug] => no_theme)Miscellaneous
stdClass Object ([term_id] => 13337 [name] => Our people [taxonomy] => category [slug] => nashi-ludi)Our people
stdClass Object ([term_id] => 17739 [name] => Russians in the USA [taxonomy] => post_tag [slug] => russkie-v-ssha)Russians in the USA
stdClass Object ([term_id] => 17821 [name] => business in the USA [taxonomy] => post_tag [slug] => biznes-v-ssha)business in the USA
stdClass Object ([term_id] => 24592 [name] => ours in exile [taxonomy] => post_tag [slug] => nashi-v-emigracii)our emigration
Read also on ForumDaily:
Let's face the crisis together and support each other
No one in the world expected a coronavirus pandemic, but she came in disrupting the usual rhythm of life and work of billions of people, causing panic and uncertainty about tomorrow.
ForumDaily also faced financial difficulties due to the loss of some advertisers due to the economic downturn and quarantine. But we are not reducing the number of materials and the mode of operation, since we want our readers to receive timely and up-to-date information in this difficult time. In addition, we support Local small businesses in the USA that suffer the most.
But ForumDaily is also a small business. Despite the loss of part of the income, we are doing our best to ensure that you are informed and armed with all the necessary knowledge to counter the pandemic and resolve other important issues during quarantine.
To maintain this rhythm of work, we need your help. We will be grateful for any amount that you are willing to allot to support our team.
Let's face the crisis together!
Security of contributions is guaranteed by the use of the highly secure Stripe system.
Always yours, ForumDaily!
Do you want more important and interesting news about life in the USA and immigration to America? Subscribe to our page in Facebook. Choose the option "Priority in the show" - and read us first. And don't forget to subscribe to ForumDaily Woman and ForumDaily New York - there you will find a lot of interesting and positive information.