Taos FUR Styling,LLC
Taos Fur Styling owner Lisa Hopkins
Taos Fur Styling, a new pet grooming shop, has opened its doors on Paseo del Pueblo Norte, across from El Meze.
Owner Lisa Hopkins got her cosmetology license in Texas and worked in the hair business for a few years, but she didn’t like the hours. In the meantime, she was showing dogs professionally and discovered that she enjoyed working with them.
“A friend I showed Pomeranians with, bought a kennel and asked me if would like to go to grooming school and work for her,” said Hopkins. “So I took a course with North Texas All Breed School of Grooming, got my degree and began to work as a groomer in 1993.”
Coincidentally, that was also the year she started belly dancing.
“I was a professional belly dancer for over 20 years,” she said. “It’s important to have different skills in life.”
She worked for a kennel in a small town in Crowley, Texas for over eight years.
“Later I moved on to work for Dr. Mark Cox in Southlake, Texas,” she said. “That marked another milestone in my career. After 10 years, Mark sold the grooming part of the business to me and I became an entrepreneur.”
Hopkins kept a busy pet spa with six full-time employees for over two years.
Then another life-changing event happened, which would eventually bring her to Taos.
“Cancer took my husband of 28 years away from me,” she said. “We had come to Taos for vacations together and liked the mountains and small-town life so much that we were planning to retire here. About a year after he died, my best friend Serena said, ‘It’s time for you to go to Taos and learn to ski.’ I listened to her.
She sold her house, cars and business, packed up her truck and her dog Zandy and moved to Taos.
“I was lucky enough to find a job as a groomer for three years, while I kept waiting on this cute little shop in El Prado to come up for lease,” Hopkins said. “I had my eye on it back when it was Francesca’s, thinking that the location would be great for a grooming shop. The beautiful lot is also a nice park-like place for dogs.”
Hopkins just planted an organic garden on the property.
“I want to make it pretty and peaceful for both people and pets,” she said.
She has been working steadily since she opened her doors.
“I feel so blessed I have had customers look for me,” she said. “I am also very grateful to Bruce and Audrey from Critters, Ann-Marie, Teresa and Chris from Unleashed and Liz from Ten Thousand Wags, who have all sent me grooming clients. I opened on June first and the smile has not left my face since.”
Among the services that Hopkins offers are dog baths and grooming.
“Grooming goes beyond making them look cute,” Hopkins said. “It helps prevent and discover potential health issues before they become a problem. Groomers are often the first one to notice when a pet has any condition that may require the attention of a veterinarian.”
She also has a variety of add-on spa services like mud baths and blueberry facials, combined with flushing of ears, medicated baths, sugar scrubs and a salt scrub and conditioning that provides great relief to dry, cracked paws.
The mud baths are designed to bring out the shine in dogs’ coats.
“It is a moisturizing treatment that benefits not only the pet’s fur, but also the skin,” Hopkins said. “It blends vitamins A, D and E, aloe vera, jojoba oil and deep sea mud, which draws out the toxins and impurities from the body.”
She also brushes their teeth for free with a bath or groom.
And then there is cat grooming.
“Of course cats can be groomed,” Hopkins said. “I try to schedule their appointments when there are no dogs around and to make them feel as relaxed as possible. We can shave cats that tend to mat up, shed too much or are too fat to clean themselves.”
She also does comb-outs and baths of cats that do not need to be shaved.
“All my products, for cats and dogs, are non toxic and organic whenever possible, even my cleaning products,” she said. “I am very picky about this due to what I learned taking care of my husband — the less we are exposed to chemicals the better, even more so for our pets.”
Taos Fur Styling is open Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., or longer if needed.
Hopkins has Thursdays reserved for special needs pets. The store is closed to the public that day, but she comes in for old pets or those that need a quiet environment.
“I have been grooming over 23 years now and cannot imagine my life without all the wonderful animals I get to meet every day,” Hopkins said. “Pampered pets are happy, healthy pets. I feel so proud to see them strut out of the shop with a new fur style or feeling better after a nice facial and bath.”
Ken and Becky McMurphy come once a month from Eagle Nest to have their two miniature schnauzers, Jojo and Ace, groomed by Hopkins.
“Lisa is very gentle with our dogs and takes good care of them,” said Ken McMurphy. “I have had schnauzers for thirty years and know exactly how I want them to look like. She gives them the best trimming! I would recommend her to anybody.
By : Teresa Dovalpage
1018 Paseo del Pueblo Norte
El Prado, New Mexico
(575) 208-6699 ( across from El Meze )
Open : Monday -Tuesday 8:00AM - 3:00 PM
Thursday -Friday 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Click on red icon on map for driving instructions .