TRUMBULL, Conn. — You could say Olivier Leibowitz has jumped from Madison Avenue to, well, Madison Avenue.
After a long career as an advertising executive for Young & Rubicam and other top New York City agencies, the Trumbull man — facing his 50th birthday — decided to take stock of the future.
“We thought maybe we should think about doing something fun and different,” he said of a heartfelt talk he had with his wife, Tamara Peterson, last year.
And thus was born Wet Paws Dog Grooming, a cheerful shop the couple thought up in July and opened just four short months later in November on Trumbull’s Madison Avenue.
The pair, who, along with their two daughters, have three dogs, said the idea seemed like a natural for the canine-centric family.
And their love and appreciation for their furry friends helped guide their detailed business plan.
“We’re really big on the safety and wellness and health of the pet,” Leibowitz said. “We do everything to make it easy for the animals.”
To that end, Wet Paws takes a detailed history of its clients — from vaccinations and health concerns to the pet’s personality and potential fears.
A regular visit might start with a dog simply “hanging out” in the grooming room, getting a feel for the space and quelling any anxiety. Next up, Fido might head over to the bathing station for a relaxing scrub down with all-organic shampoos and a calm, 15-minute soak in a conditioning mixture.
Dogs spend time drying before heading to one of the four grooming stations equipped with hydraulic lift tables and staffed by licensed, professional groomers.
After a thorough beauty treatment, pets are decked out with a bandana, bowtie or hair decoration that’s part of the package.
Along the way, pets “text” their owners to let them know what they’re up to and when they’ll be ready for pick-up.
“It’s from the dog. It’s ‘Hey, Mom…’,” Leibowitz said. “You want them to giggle and have fun.”
Wet Paws tries to be transparent by making sure customers can see into the grooming room and know their pets are being cared for well. In addition to full-service packages, the shop offers “Wash-N-Dash” bathing, tooth brushing and nail trimming, as well as free dog pick-up and drop off for Trumbull senior citizens.
Leibowitz said he believes the dogs — and some cat customers — leave Wet Paws with a little spring in their step.
“They leave and they’ve got this strut to them, like they know they’re looking and feeling good,” he said.
Wet Paws is located at 4244 Madison Avenue. For more information, visit www.wetpawsdoggrooming.com .