I’m sure many of you Fluff Dog fans are curious to learn more about shop owner and groomer extraordinaire, Michelle Wolff. I was at Fluff Dog a few days ago and got to sit down with her to probe her animal-loving mind for a fun Q&A.
When did you know you wanted to work with pets?
Basically since I was a baby.
Tell us a brief history of how you became a groomer?
I had to get a job, because I needed experience to work for this veterinarian, so I started working at a grooming shop bathing dogs. And I always liked it. And then after a little time I was able to start working for the vet.
So years later, how did you get back into the grooming industry?
Later on, I was actually working as a massage therapist for people, but got sick of working with people, and wanted to go back to working with animals. So I got a job bathing and grooming dogs at a kennel. And then it just started from there. That’s how I actually started learning how to do cuts.
What is one of the most rewarding aspects of running a business where you beautify dogs all day?
I would have to say being your own boss is awesome. And making your own schedule. But as far as rewarding, a lot of the time you get to form relationships with the dogs, rather than, like compared to when you’re working at a vet and most of them are scared. And, you know, it’s a little more of a relaxing environment.
That you’ve been able to help create (the relaxing environment) because you knew you wanted Fluff to be a place with positive energy?
Right. Yeah. Yeah.
Tell us something about operating Fluff Dog that your clients may not know about?
I like to stagger appointments so that dogs who may not want to be here don’t have to stay too long. Also because that helps prevent it from becoming too overwhelming in the shop. Less stressful, which is also better for the dogs. We also cater to dogs who need more personal attention, or need to be groomed without other dogs around. I always make sure I have enough time in situations like that.
So, now I’m going to ask you some questions that are unrelated to grooming, so clients can get to know another, more personal side of you.
Where and when were you born?
I was born in March, in a blizzard, in Boston, Massachusetts.
What’s your favorite TV show, movie and book?
Okay, so Walking Dead and Game of Thrones. Movies, there are just too many.
What’s one, or more than one, that you really love that comes to mind right now?
Well, it wouldn’t be like my favorite movie, but it’s one that I watch every time it comes on TV… Wedding Singer. But I wouldn’t say it’s my favorite movie. Just like Overboard, it doesn’t matter if it has like ten minutes left, I still have to watch it.
I can give my favorite author.
Okay. Favorite author?
How about a food you can’t live without?
What does the perfect day off of work look like?
Pajamas and TV, surrounded by my pets.
What three items would you want to have if you were stranded on a deserted island?
A shovel, like one of those gardening shovels, so it could also be used as a knife. And a tent. And a water purifier.
During road trips which artists have to be on your playlist?
Arcade Fire. I’d say Led Zeppelin. And some Drake.
If you could be any superhero or fictional character, who would you be?
Tell us why?
Because it would just be a closer connection, you know, a closer connection to animals. More than I have now. Like I could actually talk to them. And I would be able to fix them, you know, ‘cause he’s a vet.
What are three words that describe you well?
Okay, so three words that describe me well…. Moody, I’m moody. Hungry. And silly.
(It’s at this point that client and friend Donna Lynne Barfoot, who was sitting on the side during the interview, piped up to add her own three words that describe Michelle well. I thought they were perfect, and asked if I could include her thoughts.)
Donna: I’d also add generous. And an amazingly gigantic heart. One of the most compassionate people I have ever met in my life. Michelle has an infinite amount of compassion.
Did you discover something new or surprising about Michelle after reading this Q&A? Share your thoughts or questions with us in the comments section below.