Stephanie first began grooming when she was 16 years old at the PetSmart in Layton. After becoming manager of the salon, she went to grooming academy and learned how to teach. Her last five years with PetSmart, before opening her first salon, was teaching grooming academies in the western states. In 2006, she decided to work for herself and opened Classy Canine in Quarry Village.
"Jordan left his job to help me with the salon, and [dog-grooming] actually ended up being his passion," Stephanie said. "I honestly have never taught a student who became as good at grooming as Jordan, but that's probably because he just loves it so much."
They closed Classy Canine and opened Canine Clips at Kimball Junction a few years later and decided to add mobile grooming service to their offerings. The K9 Express began serving the Wasatch Front, because the Snells wanted to keep Canine Clips open and have the mobile salon remain as an extension.
Stephanie said they soon realized the mobile grooming salon needed to serve the Park City community, so they closed Canine Clips and began grooming exclusively through the K9 Express in a converted bus that is completely self-contained.
"Sometimes Jordan just pulls up into the driveway and does the grooming right there, or clients that have been with us for years trust him enough to hand him a garage code to walk in and retrieve their pet," Stephanie said. "Sometimes they'll just meet him at their house, get their dog started and take off. It's nice, because they can go to work and come home to a groomed dog."
She said mobile grooming also means there is no kennel time for the dogs, which can create "major anxiety" in a dog at a salon. The pet is the only dog they are working on, so no other dogs are waiting around in a kennel to get groomed or get picked up from the salon.
The Snells currently serve the Kamas, Oakley, Henefer, Coalville, Wanship and Park City communities but will drive to Midway or Heber for a minimal additional service charge. In order to serve more customers in those areas, they are looking into purchasing a second mobile grooming salon.
While they face competition, Stephanie said she believes it is her expertise and experience that makes her mobile salon stand out among the rest.
"I would never hire someone on that did not meet our standards. The classes I taught were professional grooming academies that kept up on the current trends, which we still do today," she said. "Our 18 years of experience and expertise is the main difference between us and everyone else."
The K9 Express: