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A happy ‘tail’ from new business owner

A former police officer has turned her love of dogs into a successful venture, thanks to help from the South Cheshire Chamber of Commerce.

Elaine Silvester, who runs Pawfectly Calm Dog Grooming, has taken to the road in a brightly-coloured van after receiving cash backing from the Chamber Loans Scheme.

Pawfectly Dog with Richard.JPG
South Cheshire Chamber loans executive Richard Weilding with dog-groomer Elaine Silvester and her pet dog, an Alaskan Malamute

A back injury at work left Elaine, 35, who lives in Crewe, looking for a new career. She said: “After leaving the police I toyed with a number of business ideas but really wanted to work with animals, especially dogs.

“The pet market is a strong one. Even in a recession people will spend on the much-loved four-legged members of their family. But it’s not all about profit. I love meeting dogs and their owners and find everyday rewarding.”

In preparation for her new career, she completed a Level 3 diploma in Canine Studies and dog grooming course at Reaseheath College.

Elaine started her venture on a part-time basis grooming dogs for friends. She applied to the Chamber for a loan to set her on the road to a full-time business.

She used the loan to kit out a van as a mobile ‘beauty salon’ for dogs complete with hydro-bath and blast dryer. Canine clients are washed, dried, manicured and given VIP treatment every time they set a paw aboard.

She added: “I believe it’s important to strike up a rapport with the animals. Dogs often feel more comfortable being close to familiar surroundings and this encourages owners to be there during the washing and grooming process. Seeing dogs approach the van with tails wagging is such a bonus.”

Chamber Business Loans Executive Richard Weilding commented: “In deciding to lend to Elaine we were impressed by her enthusiasm for her subject and the fact that she had tested the waters before deciding to go fully into the business venture.

“A significant influence on our final decision to lend was the staggering number of testimonials Elaine produced as part of her plan. We felt confident that once she had acquired and prepared her mobile facility, she would hit the ground running which is exactly what she did.”

For more information on Chamber loans contact Richard Weilding on 01270 504700.