San Diego Sen. Juan Vargas's measure creating a voluntary certification program for the pet grooming industry was approved by the state Senate Appropriations Committee. The bill, called "Lucy's Law," was submitted to prevent injuries and fatalities to pets resulting from visits to the pet groomer.
"Professionalizing the pet grooming industry is a necessary step toward ensuring that groomers are properly trained and pets are protected from harm," said Vargas. "Through this certification program, pet owners can be confident that their pets are in good hands." Vargas authored Senate Bill 969 after learning about Lucy, a small Yorkshire terrier mix, who sustained multiple injuries during a routine trip to the groomer. Among these injuries were a detached retina, a severed ligament in her leg, and lacerations to five of her eight nipples.
There have been thousands of life-threatening injuries to pets over the years due to negligent and undertrained pet groomers who use improper techniques when grooming animals, according to Vargas. Injuries from these negligent acts range from severe lacerations due to incorrect usage of grooming tools, toe injuries, broken bones caused by the animal being dropped, eye injuries, and in the most severe of cases, death.
The bill creates the California Pet Grooming Council and allows for voluntary certification of pet groomers and pet bathers and brushers. Senate Bill 969 also establishes the requirements necessary to obtain a certificate as a pet groomer or pet bather and brusher, and set forth the duties and obligations of a certified pet groomer or pet bather and brusher.