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Jairo Rodriguez

This Rising Star's Enthusiasm, Talents, and Wisdom Will Serve Them Well On Their Grooming Journey

Meet Rising Star and Pet Groomer Grad Jairo Rodriguez of Petsense in Chattanooga, Tennessee! Jairo is incredibly passionate about animals, enthusiastic about grooming, and well-spoken about their new career path. Anyone interested in our program and what to expect would do well to read Jairo’s answers here and we’ve been proud to have them as a student here.

Jairo’s mentor Liz Thompson shares our praise, telling us, “Jairo is very deserving of this Rising Star nomination! They are such a joy to work with and show great determination and respect while learning. Jairo is full of tenacity and works really hard at each skill and their growth since level 2 has blown me out of the water. Paragon is very lucky to have Jairo as a representative of what we strive for within our students and will be a great addition to the grooming industry!”

Why did you choose dog grooming as a career?

Choosing grooming as a career meant I’d look forward to showing up for work. That’s it – it doesn’t feel like a job as much as an opportunity to nurture playful and creative flows in an intimate setting with animals – a longing to break out of the mundane.

What did you enjoy most during your coursework?

Having Liz Thompson as a live mentor to supply feedback in an encouraging and practical way! Liz’s tips always supplemented Paragon’s printed and digital resources during the times my memory fell short (admittedly a lot) without ever being harsh. She was constructively gentle.

Learning about anatomy and pet wellness is also a plus. It allowed me to envision pet babies beyond the pampered salon and become curious about their behavior and diet. Why might their gums be this way? How can I make myself more approachable to them? What steps need to be taken during an emergency? I catch myself flipping through pocket pal quite often too. Thanks team!

Where can we see your work?

Come to Petsense in Chattanooga!

What are your future goals?

The idea of rescuing farm animals from slaughter has occupied my mind since I was a teenager. Maybe in the future that could mean developing acres of open land into an animal sanctuary. Doggies of course would have their part 🙂 Possibly a multi-use facility where dogs come for lifestyle enriching retreats on training, grooming, and opportunities to work their breed specific traits. From companion animals to a wild heart.

Any advice for aspiring groomers?

Being that I am so new to this field, I have to start by saying I really don’t know a thing! Internalizing that “I don’t know” sparks my curiosity and thirst for knowledge, or at least an openness to new experiences. How can you invite playfulness and joy into your day? What might help you decrease the time your pup is being groomed while maintaining your health and the quality of your work?

Lately these are just some of the questions that “I don’t know” the answers to. Find eagerness in the unknown. Whether you are process-oriented or fixated on the final goal, either way, give yourself some grace. Call upon something outside of yourself when you can’t. Do you know what that might be?

About Jairo Rodriguez

Jairo Rodriguez graduated Paragon's Distance Learning Program in 2023. See their work at Petsense!
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