Emily is a cut above after battling cancer, Pet Business World UK’s Pet Trade News & Events
Dog groomer Emily Pritchard is back to do the job she loves at Jollyes after refusing to let cancer keep her from caring for her canine clients.
Emily, 24, lost her right leg after being diagnosed with cancer in 2019, but that hasn’t stopped her pets from being pampered in the grooming spa at Jollyes store in Cannock, Staffordshire.
She has had to adjust to working in a wheelchair and is now learning to walk with a prosthetic leg, which she will wear for work as she becomes more confident.
Her clients range from tiny Yorkshire Terriers to an 18 Stone Newfoundland, as she and her spa colleague give up to 11 furry clients a day.
Emily returned to work last August after 14 months of rest during treatment and recovery and was delighted the spa was able to reopen permanently after the lockdown restrictions ended in April.
“It was fantastic to go back to work to see all the colleagues in the store, the dogs and their owners,” she said. “I feel like we’ve regained some normalcy and for me that means I can do what I love the most.
“Finding out that I had cancer was very difficult and going through treatment was very difficult, but wanting to go back to work and take care of the dogs got me through it.
Emily, who lives in Shifnal, Shropshire, had suffered from a painful knee for three months before being diagnosed with cancer and telling her she would need an above-knee amputation.
She underwent specialized treatment at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and, in addition to recovering from the operation and undergoing chemotherapy, she had to protect herself from covid when the pandemic struck.
His love for dog grooming began during his work experience while studying animal care at Rodbaston College in Staffordshire. She has been a professional groomer for eight years and joined Jollyes three years ago.
“From day one I loved it here at Jollyes and they have been very good to me throughout my treatment and helping me come back part time,” she says.
After the spa reopened, a lot of work involved corrective cuts to sort out any DIY hairstyles that had gone awry. Now she’s getting requests to give dogs “mullet” cuts, which have become all the rage – though she draws the line to color the dogs and paint their nails.
Jollyes Regional Manager Matt Godwin said, “Emily is the most positive and inspiring person I know. She always wanted to come back to work and keep doing what she does best. She’s full of beans, cheerful and loves being around animals.