ABC Grooming Instruction Program Canadian Student of the Month– August 2013
Aleisha Martin lives in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. Aleisha, or Ali for short, is in the process of completing her externship at Petcetera, a large and successful grooming salon and pet store. She is building her confidence and skill level with each new day at her externship. Aleisha has devoted a lot of time and enthusiasm to her education by working on completing her grooming certification, as well as her dog training certification through ABC.
- Was grooming your first choice for a career?
Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted to be veterinarian and that dream continued for long time. I realized, however, as I got older, that I was not ready for the schooling and commitment it really takes to become a veterinarian. I began to explore other avenues of the pet industry. I decided pursuing grooming would be an excellent and rewarding career opportunity because I would still be in the pet industry and I love making people’s pets look great.
- What animal or person most inspired you to pursue a career in the animal industry?
My inspiration actually came from a dog named Shandy, an older golden retriever that I spent a lot of time with. Shandy was a beautiful and very sweet dog who was always happy to see you. She always made you feel loved and special, even when you had a rough day. I love how in the pet industry, you work with many animals who are always happy to see you and enjoy a good belly rub, just like Shandy.
- How and when did you know that you’d be a success in the pet industry?
About six months ago, someone I barely knew, told me I treat every pet like my own and make every pet parent feel like she has the only pet in the world. That really made me think ‘Yes, working with animals is my passion, and it is what I want to pursue.’ I knew from then on that I could make pets and their owners feel special—and it would make me successful and happy with my career choice.
- What was the biggest challenge you have faced during your externship and how did you overcome it?
My biggest challenge was myself. I was constantly second-guessing myself. I worried that my skills were not good enough or I was not doing something right. I was afraid to try and afraid of failure. Luckily, my mentor was (and is) very supportive and reassuring. She reassured me that I do have good skills and, as with anyone, practice was the only way to become better. After working on more dogs with her guidance, I was able to see what I am capable of—and I surprised myself. Since then, I have much more confidence in my skills.
- If you could style a dog or cat after any celebrity, who would it be and why?
The first celebrity who comes to my mind is Katy Perry. She has a wild and fun style, and exhibits so many traits and interests. There would be more than enough room for creative and imaginative grooming and fun colors. I love doing color on dogs and making them look unique and fun.
- What are your plans for the future?
I hope to finish my grooming and dog training certification at ABC and continue to work in the pet industry. I would love to incorporate aspects of my knowledge of dog training into my work as a groomer and vice versa. I also know I will continue learning and improving my skills each day.