Lincoln lovingly threw himself at Annie Marcinko as she greeted him on her porch.
The 4-year-old large Swiss mountain dog was ready to be pampered with nail trimming, bathing, toothbrushing and ear cleaning, all from the comfort of his own driveway in Green Ridge.
Lincoln, a Westminster Kennel Club show dog, is just one of many canine and feline clients cared for close to home at Marcinko’s business, Zoom & Groom, a mobile pet salon serving the North. eastern Pennsylvania.
The business, which began in December, parks outside pet owners’ homes to trim their dog or cat’s nails, wash them or brush their teeth, among other services.
“I do it right in front of their house and when I’m finished, I bring them straight so they don’t have to wait” Marcinko said. “Everyone told me it was the most practical thing possible” especially for families with young children.
No more stalls
Marcinko’s client Crystal Satriano echoed this sentiment.
Drop off his almost 2-year-old 26-pound cockapoo at the groomer and wait for a call he attended to “Totally ruin your day” she said. “He hates going there and I hate leaving it in a little crate in a place he doesn’t know.”
In Zoom & Groom, Milo’s ears were cleaned, teeth brushed, and given a bath in the comfort of outside his home in Thornhurst Township.
What stayed with Satriano was that Milo still loved Marcinko after the experience. He trotted out of the Zoom & Groom van like a king.
“I knew she would be gentle and loving towards him just like I would,” said Satriano. “Not only is she talented and does a great job, but she’s also a really great person.”
“I have found my vocation”
Marcinko, 25, holds a veterinary assistant diploma. She loves working with animals but did not appreciate the “sad” side of the vet. So, after a suggestion from his father, Marcinko went through a two-month grooming program at Cindy’s Canine Companions Salon & School in Rehrersburg, and Zoom & Groom was born.
“I have found my vocation” she said.
She found out about Wag’n Tails, a mobile grooming conversion company, at a grooming salon, bought the truck in late 2016 and on December 2, Moscow resident Marcinko stopped by his first customer. .
Inside the van on a cold late January day, the 2010 St. Croix graduate guided the gentle 100-pound Lincoln onto a coffee table. She stepped on a pedal to lift the table and cut and file Lincoln’s fingernails. With the manicure done, with encouragement, Lincoln jumped off the table into a shallow stainless steel tub in the back of the truck.
Lincoln lifted his half-white paws to avoid soaking them; he doesn’t like wet feet.
Owned by Kristen Langan of Scranton, the large dog didn’t bark once and barely stirred as Marcinko rubbed his fur in circles with almond soap. She sprayed on the shampoo, releasing a shower of hairs, and dried Lincoln off. Between the jets of water, the dog was shaking his whole body, aiding in the drying process.
Marcinko, who graduated from West Chester University with a biology degree in 2014, makes the most of his van’s limited space with hidden cabinets revealing towels, soaps and sprays. Outside the truck, a door opens at the back to store the bath water.
The white truck with purple details inside is adorned with a logo designed by his aunt; cartoon portraits of Marcinko’s cat, a black and white “tuxedo cat” and her dog, a Labradoodle, are surrounded by bubbles in a bath.
Marcinko, who also works part-time at J. Crew Mercantile at the Shoppes at Montage, is one of the few groomers in northeastern Pennsylvania who groom cats and make house calls for nail clippings.
Grooming animals is important to help prevent dry skin, she said, adding: “Some really stink or the longer hairs, like a cat, get really matted”, It is also important for older dogs to have their nails trimmed to avoid joint pain.
Costs vary by breed and size.