SHELDON—Michelle Weppler’s career aspirations went to dogs, which have always been her passion.
The 21-year-old recently opened Zibby’s Dog Grooming & Boutique in Sheldon.
Weppler’s black Lab Zibby, who died five years ago, is the origin of the shop’s unique name. The dog was by Weppler’s side for 12 years is now immortalized by name and is the face of Zibby’s Dog Grooming & Boutique logo.
“He was my whole passion. I fell in love with dogs and wanted to work with animals,” Weppler said. I fell in love with it. Once I started grooming I knew I wanted my own store and wanted to name it as a kind of tribute.
Weppler grew up in Sheldon and started learning how to groom dogs in 2020.
Although a person doesn’t need to be certified to groom dogs in Iowa to start a business, Weppler wanted to get certified.
Weppler started by taking online classes with ABC College, which is an animal behavior institution.
After graduating, Weppler began an internship with My Best Friend in Sioux City, a dog salon that offers grooming services. She then worked at Doggy Style Pet Grooming in Sioux City.
“They recommended a more hands-on course in Iowa Lakes,” Weppler said.
Weppler enrolled at Emmetsburg Community College, which offers a professional dog grooming program that provides students with “comprehensive, hands-on, and inspirational training in dog grooming.”
“I loved everything about it and learned so much and they told me I should learn more at a school in Hastings, Minnesota,” Weppler said.
She then attended the Rio Grooming School & Salon in Hastings, which offers training in dog grooming while learning the trade of dog grooming.
“I went there in November and decided I wanted to open my own business,” Weppler said. “I knew Sheldon needed another groomer.”
Zibby’s Dog Grooming & Boutique opened May 9 at 511 Third Ave. The business is in the same compound that housed the campus cleaners and launderers, so it had some of the equipment needed to help groom the dogs.
Zibby’s caters to dogs of all sizes, large or small. She has four dogs of her own, three of which are larger. There’s Henry, a great Bernese mix; Maverick, a German Shepherd; Winston, a black lab; and Peanut, an American Shetland Sheepdog.
“I love big dogs and I grew up with bigger dogs. I find it a little easier to work with them,” Weppler said. any shape or size.”
A typical grooming session includes bathing, brushing, nail trimming, and ear cleaning. A haircut is also available depending on the dog.
Weddings start at $45.
Weppler said she has stayed busy since she opened the business nine days ago.
“It was amazing,” she said. “My first week, I was almost full. I didn’t think it would take off so quickly. I was super happy.