HAVANA, Nov. 14 For five years, the veterinary doctor Anitée Vidal Zúñiga has “I dog”, her pet hairdresser, located in 5th. Avenida and Calle 80, in Havana.
“After I graduated, I started working in a research center in the province of Havana, but it was too far away. In those moments I attended the puppies to a lady and one day she proposed to open this place. Therefore, I am the founder of I dog, “Anitée told Cubasí.
Although today “I dog” is the pride of the young woman, she never imagined dedicating herself to animal beauty services: “I always thought to focus on the issue of health, not beauty.
I was fascinated by the world of dogs and also that of marine mammals, but as far as the latter are concerned, there are very few options, just the National Aquarium, and this site already has its staff of veterinarians and there are many others to enter. I wish we had more possibilities in this regard. Then came this proposal and here I am. “
The Anitée is one of the many businesses that emerged in Havana after the opening of self-employment on the island. And although there are many restaurants, bars, cafes and hostels, a pet hairdresser is not a usual service in the city.
“Many people come and are amazed that spaces like this exist in our country and are surprised:” but here is this done? “,” Do people pay for the bathroom of pets? “, They have told Anitée.
According to the entrepreneur, she opened her business “rather because of my experience as a veterinarian, that often makes clients feel more confident and confident. Here he worked a boy who was a specialist in pet hairdressing.
He had a lot of patience; He showed me the cuts, the handling of the scissors and other instruments; the difference between the hairdressing of simple pets and those of exhibitions. The latter is more complicated and demanding for the details to take into account. “
The young woman explains that, for example, “the cocker has hair left on his abdomen and legs. They are small dogs, that when entering the field, the hair protects them. In the case of the farmer, should be well dense, so that when you throw in the water to look for prey (ducks, birds) do not wet the skin and thus avoid getting sick. It is an art that adapts to needs and purposes. “
But “I dog not only serves dogs, but also cats. “They bring us cats of different breeds and we also bathe and peel them,” he says.
Anitée tells that, although she already had previous knowledge, she had to study a lot and get information to proliferate her business: “In the university, as you go through the different species, you are taught the breeds, either of the birds of farm, horses, pigs, dogs.
But when you are in this world of pets, you must study, because depending on the breeds, diseases occur, and there are specific care to prevent animals from getting sick. It is not the same to have a chow chow as a rottweiler, you have to know the particularities. “
He has also learned to know animals according to their race and behaviors. Therefore, they are not afraid of it, and they already know in “I dog” how to deal with them.
“When you know a little about the behaviors of animals, you realize when the dog intends to bite or just lets you see” I’m a dog of character, but while I’m not hurting what you’re doing to me, I’m not going to to bite”. The discomfort or discomfort is expressed through the way the tail moves, the position of the ears or the bristly hair.
“I’m not afraid of them, it’s even easier for me to handle the big boys than the little ones, like the Tibetan (people call him Pekinese), or the chihuahua, who look like children soaped up when you shower them.
The latter, because they are so small, families do not educate them well; They are fussy, they have bad character. And when the animal is big and moody, we ask the owners to stay with us (it refers to Yaumi, the girl who works with her), even at bath time, so that they get used to it, and more or less we are driving them.
“We try not to use the muzzle, because they feel uncomfortable and the behavior is worse. Since arriving at the hairdresser, often with the owners present, I begin by brushing them; I keep my voice firm, but soft, so that the animals relax and know that I am not going to attack them. When I turn on the dryer and brush it, they feel the massage on their skin, they become calmer “.
Although “I dog” is a kind of pride for Anitée, she does not rule out that at some point Cuba is ready for veterinarians to open their own clinics and be able to dedicate themselves to the health of animals: “I hope the country continues to prosper in relationship with the non-state sector of the economy and that veterinary doctors allow us to work in a particular way.
I know that until now this has not been possible due to the issue of medicines, equipment, facilities. I hope everything goes better! I would like to work in a place where I had the opportunity to combine both.
For the moment, I am in I dog, and in this world I have learned a new trade. Rather, I am a full-fledged veterinarian; I master the concepts of health and now I have also incorporated the concepts of beauty “.
with information from Cubasí