While my use of social media has built invaluable relationships, the people I most often connect with are in neighboring states, on the other side of the country, or even on the other side of the world. That said, when Peggy, a Twitter friend of mine, mentioned Albany, NY, I reached out immediately. Then, through Peggy, I made a new real-life connection with her groomer, Melissa. I’d like to introduce them both to you.


Peggy Frezon, from The Writer’s Dog, often writes heartfelt, dog-centered articles for Guidepost Magazine, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and her blog, Peggy’s Pet Place. She and I have been chatting for some time about dog related issues and, after learning that we live a mere 16 miles apart, we met yesterday to “talk dog”  and discuss writing, social media and aspects of blogging in person.

If you love dogs, stories about dogs,  writing, and/or reading, be sure to find Peggy through Twitter or her blog.

When I first arrived at Peggy’s house, Kelly, her sweet (and delightfully spoiled) rescued cocker-mix, was just finishing with her bath. Now, most of us bathe our dogs in a tub, with the hose or at the groomer, but Kelly has some special considerations. With her long beautiful hair (mind you – this is not fur), she requires grooming, and yet her separation anxiety poses an interesting challenge. The solution?


Melissa Francisco, owner and groomer at TransFURmations, drives a traveling grooming station. Melissa has been grooming dogs for 13 years and went mobile with her business in 2008. While she caters to all dogs and cats, she finds that  anxious and seniors dogs benefit most from her stress-free service.

What does it take to operate the mobile unit? According to Melissa’s website:

The only thing we need to groom your pet is an electrical outlet within 100 feet from where we park and a fairly level parking area.  The van has fresh and grey water tanks, lighting, dryers and all equipment on board.

It’s true. The van is quite an impressive operation. I joined Melissa, Peggy and Kelly inside to see for myself. While the space is not designed for three people and a dog, I was perfectly comfortable with room from side to side and, at 5’8″, there was still head room to spare. Most importantly, Kelly was very comfortable, plied with treats, and she looked simply beautiful, her pigtail ears decorated with bows after Melissa had worked her magic.

Kelly Clean

If you’re in New York’s Capital District, first, contact me. I’d love to meet you! Then, call Melissa at (518) 986-0473. Her rates are reasonable and her love for animals certainly qualifies her to be your dog’s best friend.

UPDATE (8/11/2010): If you’d like to see the doggy TransFURmation, Peggy posted before and after shots of Kelly.