2022 flew past just like that and it’s the time of the year again to give thanks to our lovely GPS Pawmily. Thank you for being there for us and being understanding as we changed and transition our business direction.
It’s a roller coaster ride indefinitely. We know that we’re unable to do grooming as a long-term career as we get older, so we decided it’s about time to introduce our new service and transition into doggy daycare. It was a difficult decision considering grooming has always been our main service since we started Grooming Pit Stop. Fret not, we’ll still be taking in grooming appointments, but scaling down a little.
As we exit 2022 with a big bang, we’ll be looking forward to a awesome 2023 with GPS Pawmily.
We woke up in shock on a Thursday morning. Received a Whatsapp messaged from a friend informing us that she was heading to A&E and asked us to help look after her fur kids. We head over as soon as we could after feeding our supawvisors their breakfast.
Once we arrived, we managed to check in on the fur kids, who seemed to be all calm. The cats were fed and we topped up the rabbits’ hay. Then we “kidnapped” Kelly, the shetland. For the other fur kids, we managed to settle with the other fur nannies to help feed and look after them while our friend recovers. It was a hectic scary morning before all of us calm down and had everything settled.
We had Kelly for about a week, and despite us planning to head down to the nearest park during her stay, the God of Rain decided that we should stay indoors. It rained almost every day, thundery showers to be exact. And so we stayed indoors most of the time. We only headed out during drizzle rain when we walked the void deck using the sheltered walkway.
Although we didn’t do much during her emergency pawcation cos the sky forbid us to head out, I’m pretty sure Kelly enjoyed herself. And thankfully, nothing major happened to our dear friend, and may she recovers even better. Health is wealth.
We haven’t been updating our adventures here on our website. We were swamped by both grooming and daycare, occasional pawcation, appointments. And we just had a short break in July going on a cruise. It was a nice break and we came back refreshed.
Now we’re back and yes, we had a little shuffle and we’re moving towards a new strategic direction. Everything is in a mess so bear with us as we transit towards the new direction.
We’ll be missing again for another long break. We’ve got our own place and we’re moving! So with all the moving and minor touch up at our new humble abode, we won’t be taking in much appointments. Hopefully we get everything done asap so we can get back to work as soon as we can.
Till then, do check on our website or social media for more updates.
After our Andis 5-speed clipper retired during our CNY busy period, we started to research various brands of clippers. We do know of groomers, especially in the western countries have been raving about this brand called Heiniger. It’s relatively still new in Singapore and not many local reviews yet. So we can only base on reviews from groomers from the west.
Like Andis, it does come with a few cordless models and a corded one. With all the options available, we couldn’t decide which to get and decided to head down to the store to better understand the products.
The Purchase & Unboxing
We bought ours at Kwong Chow Kee, located in Chinatown’s Fook Hai Building. After checking the availability with the shop, we decided to head our way down during one of our off days.
When we were there, we got the lady to introduce us to Heiniger and we get to hold it to see which model is comfortable for us. The corded clipper, Saphir Cord, speed is much better than the cordless clipper, Saphir Basic.
There are 3 cordless models, Saphir Basic, Saphir Style, and Opal. Both Saphir Basic and Saphir Style is only one speed, while Opal is two speed. We ended up getting Saphir Basic as firstly, it’s within our budget. Secondly, we love its plain-looking. Thirdly, the weight is just right. There’s an option to purchase an additional cord that connects to the clipper to use a corded clipper. It is good for mobile groomers who might forget to charge the battery or experience low battery while on the go. But we didn’t purchase it as we would like to see how long the battery can last us on a single charge.
The entire set that we bought comes with: Clipper Lithium-Ion battery Heiniger #10 blade Charger Care Kit
Finally got to use it after the first full charge. We were impressed at how well the pre-shave was. Despite being one speed, we would say the first pre-shave was amazingly near clean and even. We were further impressed and amazed after the final shave.
Weight-wise, it’s slightly heavier than our old Andis 5-speed. But definitely lighter than Andis 2-speed. It’s not taxing on our wrist when we use it from appointment to appointment. The only downside is there’s no indicator when the battery gets low. We were told it will get slower before it totally stops. Maybe it’s us, we couldn’t tell if it’s getting slower. We had to use our shears twice to finish the grooming session when the battery died on us. We are still learning how to notice when the battery needs to be charged.
It’s our very first cordless and we’re impressed at how we managed to shave at an angle we couldn’t do with a corded clipper. Best of all, no more tripping over the wire! Yes, sometimes we do trip over the wire and it gets annoying. Now that we’re using a cordless clipper, such a thing is of the past.
Andis vs Heiniger (Personal Opinion)
After a few days of using Heiniger, we’ve realised that we missed out a lot! In our opinion, Heiniger seems to work much better for us.
We’ve been using Andis for years, ever since we started as a student and an apprentice. From Andis 2 speed to 5 speed, the cords have been giving us issues. Though we love how light Andis 5 speed was nothing can be compared to a cordless one.
In terms of weight for cordless clippers that we’ve tried, Andis cordless clipper is heavier for us. The detachable battery itself weighs a lot, especially when in use, it’s very taxing on our wrist which made it difficult to manoeuvre during grooming. Whereas the Heiniger, we’ve tried all cordless series at the store before purchase, they’re much lighter compared to Andis cordless clippers. It’s easier to manoeuvre and less stress on the wrist.
Shaving-wise, Heiniger gives a much cleaner cut on pre-shave and is much quieter. The blades don’t get hot fast compared to when we were using Andis where we had to take a break to let the blades cool down before we continue.
It’s the best buy ever in our grooming career. We didn’t regret switching over to Heiniger. Totally recommend this to fellow groomers out there who are looking to purchase a new clipper.
We head off to pick Katsu up in the morning, together with our supawvisors as we had plans to bring the fur kids out to our friend’s place. His place has a nice garden for the fur kids to run and explore. We jokingly said it’s like having a personal dog park.
After getting all the details and instructions from Katsu’s pawrent, we’re off for some fun! The car ride with Katsu was different. Although her dad has been calling her a monster, she was relatively well behaved during the journey. She would sit quietly till we arrived at our destination.
Mia will be joining us for daycare, her mummy said she’ll drop her off at our friend’s place instead. She needed to collect her newly purchased bicycle located nearby and since it was on the way, Mia doesn’t need us to fetch her.
The Hyper Doggos
Having a decent size garden seems like a great idea where the fur kids get to run and explore. The best part of it is, that it’s private and solely for us. This means we don’t need to worry about unfamiliar dogs and a fight that might happen. Or at least if there were to be a dog fight, at least we do know how to handle the situation and be responsible for it. We’ve read too many stories online about irresponsible pawrents or guardians who don’t want to be responsible for injuries after a fight between the fur kids.
We let the fur kids run about with supervision and make sure they’re enjoying themselves and most importantly, they get along. With the hyper Katsu and Mia, we had to make sure they get a break and water parade in between their playtime. While they take a break, so do we.
It started to get cloudy and we had to get everyone back into the house. True enough, a thunderstorm arrived! Katsu panicked and started crawling up to whoever is willing to give her some comfort. We got to know that she’s scared of thunderstorms after we gave some updates to her daddy.
To be honest, she’s the first fur kid that we doggy sit that’s afraid of thunderstorms. We were a little unsure of what to do and weren’t sure if comforting her is the right way to do it. We’re pretty sure there are many trains of thought for this topic, we’ll definitely do our research about it to prepare us for a future similar situations.
Home Sweet Home
Mia’s mummy picked her up at night after dinner while Katsu head home with us for the night. Guess the girls had a fun time the entire day as Katsu slept well and didn’t disturb us at all.
It was home sweet home for Katsu on the 6th of March. Waited for her daddy to be home before we head over to drop her off. Although it wasn’t our first time looking after Katsu for a day, we were a little reluctant to send her back. Guess fun times always have to come to an end. We’re pretty sure we’ll see Katsu often as the borders start to open up recently.
We’ve stopped taking in appointments around late November for CNY 2022. Most of our regulars had booked an appointment by then and our schedules were quite packed.
Our busy period started in early January after our short break in welcoming the year 2022. As usual, it started off slow with a few appointments to start the busy peak period. We didn’t take in any new customers for the month of January, by then our February slots are almost taken up as well. It was scary to us on how fast our following month’s appointments are filling up. We didn’t expect the overwhelming support given to us by our awesome pawrents.
This year’s peak period was a little different as we did continue with our weekly daycare fur kids. And thankfully we did as we’re able to schedule them in for their CNY grooming. With the daycare, it allows us to have a little breather from the traveling in between appointments. So it’s more of a pros and cons of continuing daycare during this period.
Shaver Decided to Retire
Our main shaver, not the tiny one for paw pads, decided to retire amid our busy period. It started to not work when we were grooming our last fur kid on the 17th January. Thinking maybe it’s the wiring issue, we decided to check it out after we end our last grooming session.
Once home, we decided to test it out again. To our horror, it started to smoke, then it died on us completely. Feeling anxious, we didn’t know what to do and was feeling frustrated as it happened at the wrong timing!
After calming down, we texted our fellow groomers to see who have a spare shaver to lend us till we get our replacement. We had to thank 7 Paws for helping us during this busy and difficult time. (If you prefer grooming salon instead of house-call, you may check them out)
East to West, West to East
We had to admit that we didn’t plan well for this year’s CNY appointments. We ended up having to travel from east to west and west to east. Travelling like this was time consuming to be honest. With such poor planning, we had to minimise our appointments.
Though Singapore is relatively small compared to our neighbouring countries, but travelling does takes up most of our time. Not to mention the occasional bad traffic. And with the ongoing construction work at SLE towards BKE from our place, the traffic was slow as drivers had to slowly merge from a 3 Lane traffic into 2 Lane.
With this year’s bad planning, we’ve learnt our lesson. We will be making some changes and improvements for the following year. And hopefully, the operation will go on smoothly.
End of Peak Period
We managed to survive another peak period. And we’re thankful for everyone’s support and patience during CNY. Weirdly, this year’s peak period just went by without us knowing. It feels like time does pass fast.
Despite the hectic schedule, we’ve enjoyed every session with each fur kid that we groomed. Their warm happy welcome keeps us motivated to keep going. Despite the tiredness, seeing them gives us that burst of energy to get them groomed before the festive season.
Though we’re not looking forward to the annual peak period, but we’ll definitely see everyone again. Do book early when our CNY 2023 slots are open to avoid disappointment.
New fur kid to our daycare, Mia the Wired Fox Terrier. We don’t do weekend daycare, but her pawrent needed help looking after her for the day. Since we had an extra pair of hands, our very silent partner who was available that very weekend, we agreed.
Mia’s mummy dropped her off in the morning while we were waiting for our morning appointment to arrive. Yes, sometimes we groom from home. Either we would provide the pet transport, or the pawrent would drop the fur kid(s) at our place.
Mia’s pawrent requested for a basic groom session during the daycare, and since we had the time while waiting for Phoebe’s pawrent to pick her up, we decided to do the basic groom.
We did have a session once last year, we remembered Mia to be well behaved and would just let us groom her. But she’s no longer that cooperative girl. Her pawrent did mention that Mia does have an attitude of her own now. We wouldn’t say it’s difficult to groom her, it’s more of her walking around the grooming table. We would say she’s just a curious girl in a new environment.
We took Mia along on to our next appointment, but of course, we did seek permission before bringing her over. It’s at one of our friend’s place and we’re there to groom his fur kid. He stays at landed property and has ample garden space for the fur kids to run around. What’s a better way to release Mia’s energy by letting her go crazy in a garden right?
Mia’s pawrent did give us the instruction to manually stop her once in a while before she tires herself out. Mia doesn’t know her limit and she’ll continue to play. The fear of her being exhausted is real.
In order to stop her and get some rest, we had to get her back into our friend’s room to enjoy the nice cool aircon. It’s the only way to separate her from Mozart and take a rest before she tires herself out completely.
Mia’s pawrent has forgotten to pack her dinner, and we had to shamelessly ask Mozart to spare her some kibbles as they both are taking the same brand. We even cooked hardboiled egg to add to the kibbles to entice Mia to eat. We were told that she might be picky sometimes and just hope it doesn’t happen during our care.
She finished them without hesitation and started asking for more. We never knew she could be a glutton. But we didn’t give in to her request as we know that she’s got a sensitive tummy and feeding her more or something new, we got to consult with her mummy.
Home Sweet Home
We ended the day late at Mozart’s place. Since Mia’s pawrent was still out partying, we took Mia home with us instead. Once back to our humble abode, Mia completely went off to bed. She’s got not much energy left in her to be jumpy like she was during the day.
After bidding farewell to her, our day ended and we’re in turn the one with low energy. We’ll definitely see her again on our next adventure.
Happy Lunar New Year! We’ve come to an end to our peak month and we’re thankful for everyone’s support. For without you, we probably wouldn’t survive this period. The fur kids are always our motivation to push forward to strive for the better.
On this joyous occasion, we wished everybody good health to both the pawrents and fur kids. And may whatever we wish for do come true.
CNY 2022 Personal Reflection
To be honest, this peak month is our annual dreaded month. It’s a stressful moment trying to fit everybody in to be on schedule to look awesome for the lunar new year. But there’s always a handful that we have to disappoint due to our packed schedule.
Every year, we would reflect on how we could do things better. Frankly speaking, there’s none. We’ve tried all sorts of methods and the results are the same. We just can’t fit everybody in our packed schedule and please everyone. This is where we seek everyone’s understanding during this busy period.
Despite everything, we will reflect and hope for the better in the following year. Till then, let us enjoy the year and worry about that later.
Last but not least, thank you everyone for sticking by us.
After we settled our supawvisors and pawcation fur kids, we head out to pick Jeremy up for his week-long stay with us. Once arrived, he didn’t hesitate to hop into our little hatchback to begin his adventure with us. We were told he loves car rides.
During the journey back to our humble abode, Jeremy kept looking out the windows which we lowered a little for him to enjoy the wind blowing against his face or to take in the smell along the way back.
Once home, Jeremy mingled with our supawvisors and pawcation fur kids. And we got to know, he can get angry from the persistent dog(s) that kept annoying him. We had to separate him and Ruffles before a fight broke out. Thankfully we do have a playpen for such a scenario and it does come in handy in times like this.
Christmas Gathering – 27 December
As we had a Christmas gathering planned with our friend, we seek Jeremy’s pawrents for permission to bring him along. Thankfully, they gave the green light and so we took him along. Together with our supawvisors, we head out for a Christmas party.
Our friend stayed in landed property with a garden big enough for them to run or explore. Jeremy enjoyed himself while he explore this new place. At first, he wasn’t happy with our friend’s Lhasa apso for smelling his butt. But after a while of understanding and leaving one another alone, peace was restored.
We had BBQ for dinner and Jeremy was always loitering around us hoping to have some food. Though we were told he can eat anything except kangaroo, but we refrained from giving him anything as the meats were all marinated which wasn’t suitable to feed the fur kids. And so he just had to take in the aroma of our dinner instead.
The next day, Jeremy and our supawvisors looked so exhausted that none of them were willing to wake up for breakfast. It’s like they partied hard the day before and had some hungover the next day.
It’s monsoon season and it’s been raining for days. Sometimes it was just passing rain clouds, sometimes it could rain the entire day. It was a little difficult to bring the fur kids out for walks or excursions. And it was much more when Jeremy is outdoor trained. He needs his potty breaks. But we were told he would use the pee pads if the circumstances aren’t to his favor for outdoor potty breaks.
We do bring him out for a quick potty break before the next rain comes. Albeit short outdoor moment, it was the best we could give in such bad weather. However, we did a short walk at the park connector on a good day which Jeremy and our supawvisors enjoyed. We didn’t walk far as we’re afraid of a change of weather without any warning. Walking near home makes it easier to rush home if the weather were to turn bad.
Jeremy’s pawrents requested a grooming session during his pawcation with us. And we scheduled it nearer to the date before his stay with us ends. We offered to do a video about his grooming session as they were keen to know if he behaved well.
We were told he had never been out for professional grooming before and they were a little worried he might be difficult to handle. They adopted him and had traveled to a few countries before coming to Singapore. Was told the grooming fees overseas were crazily expensive and thus they’ve always groomed him themselves at home. So it’s an honor for us to give him nice professional grooming and we’re glad that the pawrents love it.
Attached is the video on this entry, so do watch it if you’re keen.
Home Sweet Home
It was time for Jeremy to head home. We enjoyed our time spent with him and definitely will miss him. He enjoyed his car ride home and was pretty excited to head home upon seeing his pawrent. Hope we get to see him again and share another adventure together.
Picked up the daycare fur kids and we’re off to Punggol for a walk at the Park Connector. We started the walk from Waterway Terraces 2 and headed towards Waterway Point.
The walk wasn’t pleasant from the start, because we stepped on dog poop. Sadly, an irresponsible pawrent/walker didn’t pick up the poop. It is something we still can’t understand why is it difficult to just pick up the poop or rinse away the pee? Let’s all be responsible and clear up the mess after the fur kids that we’re caring for. It doesn’t matter if it’s our own or not. It’s part of hygiene reason and keeping the neighbourhood clean is part of everyone’s job.
But of course, we didn’t let the unpleasant start ruin our day. We joked about buying the lottery as we might have some luck after stepping on the poop. We continued our journey along the park connector towards Waterway Point direction. As we noticed Covan is getting slower and a little tired, we decided to u-turn and not walk further. Thankful we did as once we arrived under the void deck, it started to drizzle. And so we ended our walk earlier than expected.
Playtime, Covan’s Shower Time
Got back to our humble abode, it’s playtime for the fur kids while we had our lunch. Covan as usual quickly went to his favourite hiding place to avoid Ruffles’ hyperactiveness. Covan prefers to befriend those that aren’t too active for him and Ruffles isn’t under that category. So it’s a game of Covan running out and back to his hiding spot while Ruffles tried to keep up.
Showered Covan after our lunch. Had to drag him out from under the shelf. Thankfully he was cooperative considering he did try to nib us previously. Sent him home after his shower and we’re pretty sure he’s relieved as no more Ruffles chasing him.
Got a call from Ruffles and Kelly’s pawrent who asked if we could keep the fur kids over for a night. She’s doing spring cleaning for the entire house, and there’ll be some moving of furniture. She’s afraid the fur kid will be in the way and disturb the movers, and there will be no peace.
Since our place was available to take them in as pawcation fur kids, we agreed. The first night went well except that Kelly doesn’t want to sleep in our room. She prefers the living room, probably because she finds our room too crowded or she prefers to be alone. On the other hand, Ruffles wanted to be as near us as possible. Anywhere we go, he follows. If we locked him out of the room by accident, he’ll sit by the door and whine till we open the room’s door and let him in.
They had another impromptu extension to one more night as their pawrent was still cleaning up the house and there’s some hiccup over the furniture delivery. As it was a rainy Christmas, we didn’t get any excursion so we had playtime at home instead.
Ruffles & Kelly Meet Jeremy
In the morning of Boxing Day, we head out to pick Jeremy up for his pawcation with us. And so he gets to meet Ruffles and Kelly. It started well, then Ruffles kept annoying Jeremy and thus we had to separate them. Kelly on the other hand didn’t seem to want to interact, she’s in her own world minding her own business.
Home Sweet Home
It’s home sweet home for Ruffles and Kelly after dinner. Their pawcation finally came to an end and we’re glad they’ve enjoyed themselves as much as we enjoyed their short stay here with us. Till then, we’ll have our next adventure again.