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Pennsylvania Pet Groomers Want the Right to Reopen

They’re asking the governor to deem them ‘essential businesses.’

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Some pet groomers in Pennsylvania are growing frustrated with the coronavirus lockdown and say they should be allowed the right to reopen because their services are essential to pet health.

Groomers in the state can get back to business only when their county enters the “yellow” stage of reopening, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. That can happen when cases have declined for two weeks, with the area’s hospital capacity also factored in. And while the yellow phase allows certain businesses to open if they follow health and social distancing guidelines, it still doesn’t permit theaters, gyms or restaurant dining rooms to open, according to the Inquirer.

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But a petition signed by more than 22,500 people calls on Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf to treat pet groomers as “essential businesses” and allow them to open right away, provided they implement social distancing procedures. Such a move would be in line with the path that Phil Murphy, governor of neighboring New Jersey, took last month.

Citing the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, pet groomers say animals do not play a role in the spread of COVID-19. And they note that lack of grooming can lead to health problems for pets.

“If we stay closed longer than June, you’re going to see more skin issues, major matting,” said Gwendolyn Carry, owner of Chez Bow Wow Pet Grooming in Northern Liberties, according to the Inquirer. “Vets are going to be overwhelmed with medically necessary groomings.”

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Read more at the Philadelphia Inquirer

Since launching in 2017, PETS+ has won 16 major international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact PETS+'s editors at editor@petsplusmag.com.

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