Michele Grenkow, CMG, CCMS
In February 1990, at the age of 15, Michele’s official animal activities started at the SPCA after a large horse seizure caused the shelter to rely solely on volunteers. Once the horses were rehabilitated and placed in new homes Michele stayed on with the SPCA as the volunteer coordinator and kennel staff/receptionist, while going through College to become a Farrier & Blacksmith. Michele continues to aid the SPCA in seizure cases and giving expert testimony when needed.
1996 started Michele into the world of medicine when she started working at BC’s top animal reproduction clinic. She was able to understand, in depth, the difference between a breeder and a great breeder. Agonizing with clients, as they had to put beloved pets down because of genetic illnesses that could have easily been screened out of breeding programs.
In 1997, Michele and her mom Hilary, started MiHi Great Danes (pronounced My High). MiHi Great Danes has produced top award winning Danes in Canada and the US.
After 5 years at the clinic she turned her sights on the human medical world, where she met her now-husband, Darcy. Michele was a First Responder for 3 years until the birth of her first child. It was during that first pregnancy (2003) that Michele was visiting a grooming friend and started helping out around the salon. Mentored and exposed to the grooming world by one of Canada’s top breed profile groomers. Everyone still teases that her second child was born in a whelping box at Canada’s largest dog show, even though she was born a week before that show!
2006 was an intense year for Michele. She took a third place in her first grooming competition. Animal Haven Grooming was given to her to carry on the legacy in September. Michele completed all her practical and written exams for IPG and one week later Hilary died on Halloween after a battle with breast cancer. Shortly after she wrote her masters and became a CMG. Three months after Michele’s Mom passed, she was undergoing a bilateral radical mastectomy herself.
In 2010, Michele set out to rally a group of Groomers into starting a Canadian certification body. Shortly thereafter that group of dedicated Canadian Groomers started Canadian Professional Groomers, later changing to Canadian Professional Pet Stylists. Competitive Grooming also came to fore front for Michele starting in Atlanta at the Atlanta Pet Fair.
After twenty one years, 2011 is a new chapter of Michele’s adventure, with the start of creative grooming, done safely and correctly through the education of the organization NAPCG.