Not everyone knows what they want to do when they grow up, but mompreneur Stacy Przybylinski, owner of Unique Pup Cutz Grooming, in Fairfield, NJ, had a pretty good idea of her calling at the tender age of 13, where she was a traveling dog show handler/groomer. She held this job, giving up many weekends with friends, until she was 21.
“I have always had a special connection with dogs,” says Stacy. “I know it’s unusual to have had such a demanding job at 13, but I loved it and have always loved working with dogs!”
After finishing high school, Stacy became a certified dog groomer and says she has never looked back.
In addition, with 27 years under her belt as a groomer, she’s also been an EMT for 20 years.
In August of 2017, Stacy moved with her family, which includes her husband and three children ages 10, 13 and 15, to Fairfield, taking her grooming business with her from Pompton Lakes. She opened her Fairfield salon in May 2018.
Stacy says she’s in her groove when she’s grooming in her beautiful 1200-square foot shop, where she likes to play music and dance as she grooms. She says her business is more of a spa than a regular grooming salon as pets can enjoy mud baths, facials and more, as well as basic grooming services. She also sells grooming brushes, shampoos, paw waxes and items for pets’ health and dental needs.
Stacy is very conscious of her furry clients’ needs. She never lets dogs come into contact with one another, only uses large dog cages so that every dog is comfortable, and only uses top-of-the line equipment, as well as first-rate safely and cleanliness procedures. She’s also quite passionate about her field and takes 40 hours of continuing education a year. She is certified in Pet CPR/First Aid, AKC Safety in the Salon and Salon Sanitation.
However, Stacy is not just an ordinary dog groomer — she’s an award-winning competitive dog groomer who took 1st Place in the prestigious extreme grooming competition at the Atlantic Pet Fair Conference this past March in Atlanta, Georgia. Winning this competition moved her up into the Open Competition level to compete with more experienced groomers.
In addition to participating in dog grooming competitions herself, Stacy also grooms show dogs offering competitive pet grooming, coloring and cuts.
“I love competing, but I also love being able to see how other competitors groom and to talk to judges after competitions where I can find out what I did right and areas where I can improve,” she says. “I am always trying to better myself and what better way is there to do so that by learning from the best in the world?”
Stacy also specializes in dying pets’ fur, whether it’s because they have gone prematurely grey or for pet parents who want to add some bright colors to their furry family members’ fur. While she only adds color if she is asked to do so, she says she enjoys the work, especially when she’s helping a family get a dog ready for a family photo.
She says she’s also very careful which dogs’ fur she dyes– only coloring dogs that enjoy to be pampered and groomed.
“Most dogs really enjoy being pampered, so these dogs I will color,” says Stacy. “When they are colorful, you can tell they really love the extra attention that they receive, and I enjoy giving them that extra wow factor.”
She says grooming dogs takes a lot of patience and that she takes time to let new customers’ dogs get to know her and trust her when she first meets them.
“I am very patient with animals and have learned many tricks over the years for making them comfortable when being groomed,” she says. “I have worked with dogs who have had bad experiences elsewhere — some who were petrified to be groomed or are scared of water, that now enjoy coming to see me at my shop.”
She also has a passion for treating animals with special needs including ones that are blind or have other health conditions.
Stacy says she builds strong trusting relationships with the pets she grooms as she sees them often, unlike vets who only see them every few months.
She’s also passionate about helping the local community whether it’s by participating in fundraisers, tricky trays or just by shopping local for pet grooming supplies.
“I love to give back and strive to do so any time I can,” says Stacy.
Unique Pup Cutz Grooming, which is located at 1275 Bloomfield Ave., Building 1, Unit 4, in Fairfield, NJ, within the Pio Costo development, is currently offering 20% off for first/time appointments. The business also offers $10 off for every client’s referral of a new client.