A couple studying business at the Ohio State University have applied to open a pet salon in New Albany.
"By carefully researching and selecting the best construction materials and the highest quality equipment, we are able to achieve the goal of building a pet salon that (will be) very similar to a luxury human salon, and keep it safe, clean and comfortable for all pets," said Emma Jin, one of the owners.
Jin said she and her husband, Patrick Qian, hope to build Emi Pet Salon on the west side of Main Street (Johnstown Road) between the New Albany Exchange and Wayside Flower Shoppe.
Emi, pronounced as Emmy, means "blessing of beauty," Jin said.
The couple immigrated from China three years ago to study business at Ohio State.
Jin said they learned new business concepts and ways to take care of their three dogs: Simba, a Yorkshire terrier mix; Caesar, a sable and white Shetland sheepdog; and Lily, a poodle.
"We learned a whole new way to take care of pets from Americans," Jin said. "Like all American pet families, we treat our pets as our children and would like to give them the best of the best to maintain their wellness, beauty and happiness."
She said she and her husband became interested in pet care while living at Easton with their three dogs. The family has since moved to New Albany.
"During a year of observation as pet parents, we realized that there are different specializations in the pet industry, such as breeder, veterinary hospital, boarding kennel, pet supplies retail and pet grooming," Jin said. "Among them, the pet grooming is the best way to maintain the overall wellness and beauty of the pets on a regular basis.
"Grooming not only keeps pets clean and pretty to prevent health issues like yeast infections and skin problems, but also allows groomers to check the condition of the pet routinely and notify the parents of any problem before it becomes a big issue."
She said Emi Pet Salon will have experienced vet technicians working in the reception area to check in pets and review the animal's weight and condition.
Jin said the couple spent a year researching the idea, traveling throughout the United States to learn best practices in pet grooming.
"We believe that the best pet grooming salon should have the following elements: professional grooming techniques to create the most proper trim style for the pet; a sanitary and relaxed environment as well as gentle handling that makes the pet safe and comfortable; and caring customer services to leave the pet's family happy and satisfied," she said.
The 4,000-square-foot two-story brick building will have two entrances: one for dogs and one for cats.
The building design will be similar to the New Albany Exchange, with wood accents and a wooden front door, said architect Zachery Price of Triad Architects of Columbus.
The New Albany Architectural Review Board approved a conditional-use permit for the building April 8.
Jin said they want to start construction in July and open in December.
Jin and Qian are completing their bachelor's degrees at Ohio State. Jin's focus is human resources and Qian's is marketing.