Pet industry welcomes grooming but calls for more

Pet Industry Association Australia

Media release 13 September 2020


The Pet Industry Association of Australia (PIAA) welcomed the Victorian government’s announcement that onsite dog grooming services can reopen from 20 September.

“This is great news for four-legged members of Melbourne families that have been denied expert grooming care under the State 4 lockdown, and until this announcement were unlikely to receive it until at least the end of October,” said PIAA national president, Barry Codling.

“Dog grooming is not about creating Instagram pets,” Mr Codling said.

“It’s essential to the good health and wellbeing of the animal, and DIY grooming can pose real risks of injury if not carried out carefully and expertly.

“The Government’s decision to permit onsite grooming services to reopen much earlier than expected will allow owners to take their dogs to professionals who not only clip claws and trim hair, but check for parasites and skin problems,” Mr Codling said.

Mr Codling said that while the PIAA welcomes Saturday’s announcement, reopening more pet care services could happen safely with minimal Covid-19 risk.

“Provided mobile grooming services are conducted with no direct contact with the human client, and businesses have an approved Covid-safe plan, they can help the pets of people and families who cannot easily bring their dogs onsite.

“This includes the frail elderly, people with disabilities and people who have no private transport or restricted mobility,” Mr Codling said.

The PIAA is seeking urgent discussions with the Victorian government about reopening mobile grooming services, as well as animal walking, boarding and training services which also serve valuable roles in the welfare of Melbourne’s pets and their owners.

Beckie Newcombe, owner of Beck’s Boarding Retreat Establishment in Melbourne, says her facility has seen pets of domestic violence victims on numerous occasions throughout this pandemic.

“Pets are innocent victims in this pandemic, and we as humans have a duty of care to ensure pet owners have access to essential animal welfare services for the benefit of both the owner and their pet,” Ms Newcombe said.

Mr Codling said, “As long as all necessary Covid-19 precautions are practised, there is no reason why wider pet care services can’t also be provided from 20 September.

“But regardless, Saturday’s announcement was a great start, and the Victorian government’s willingness to revisit its Covid-19 roadmap for Melbourne’s pets is very welcome.”

/Public Release.