Cate Garcia Groomer, Certified Pet Aesthetician and Animal Intuitive

Interview on the Jason Hennessey Podcast 02-23-2022 - Episode 19
Cate Garcia

Cate’s journey to becoming a Pet Aesthetician & Animal Intuitive

Certified pet aesthetician and animal intuitive Cate Garcia has been communicating with animals for as long as she can remember. What started as merely a childhood passion turned into a lucrative 30-year career as a luxury pet groomer, providing top of the line care and pampering to thousands of pooches throughout Southern California.
Since an early age, Cate has explored her gift of being able to understand the pets she grooms and takes care of, and helps them maintain healthy coats using the broad range of pet skincare products she works with and makes widely available. Her abilities in conjunction with the stellar products she uses have helped animals everywhere maximize the health and beauty of their skin, coat, and overall quality of life.
Join us as we talk about her wild journey that’s taken her from punk rock, rebellious high school years to international trade shows in Italy, all the way to working behind the scenes in Hollywood getting canines camera ready on HBO Max‘s competition series Haute Dog, and helping Jason and his wife, Bridget, understand their dog, Archie, a little better.
Please follow along below and hit the play button at the top of the page. Thank you for tuning in to today’s refreshing episode.

In this Episode

[01:02] Along with today’s featured guest, Cate Garcia, Jason introduces a couple family members joining us for today’s episode: his wife, Bridget Hennessey, and their doggy, Archie Hennessey.

[01:33] Cate gives us some background about her time as a professional pet groomer for more than 30 years, her big immediate family, and being raised at her father’s small animal hospital.

[04:38] Jason is curious if Cate’s family had pets while she was growing up. Cate explains that their family pets were the misfits who were surrendered at her dad’s animal hospital when owners couldn’t afford the procedures. She’s had pets ranging from dogs, cats, birds and rats. She’s recently petsat a kangaroo.

[06:04] Bridget asks Cate if she prefers a cat or a dog. Cate answers that she’s always had dogs, but at this point, she finds that caring for a cat would suit her busy lifestyle best.

[07:10] Cate goes into detail about how her ADD and dyslexia didn’t allow her to finish high school. Instead, she’d assist her dad by grooming pets in preparation for surgeries, and talking to the aggressive animals to help clear up any misunderstandings that trigger their anger.

[11:20] Jason brings up Cate’s experience as a pet aesthetician and Bridget would like to know more about it too. Cate expounds on how she discovered Iv San Bernard products from Italy and how she brings a healthy balance back to a dog’s skin.

[15:52] Jason is interested to know the workflow of a grooming salon. Cate walks us through the typical business model of a pet stylist, the average customer’s needs, and some tips to help make everyone’s grooming experience better.

[19:20] Jason and Bridget bring up the anxiousness that their dogs, Archie and Chole, feel whenever it’s time to cut their fur. Cate runs through her extended grooming and nurturing process and how she likes to build relationships with the dogs she styles.

[21:56] Jason brings up Cate’s experience on HBO Max’s Haute Dog. Cate recalls how her friend and show judge, Jess Rona, first met working at PetSmart, and how Jess brought her on the show as the in-house mobile groomer.

[24:14] Jason wants the scoop on whether any doggy moms were on the HBO show resembled stage moms. Cate reveals that there were interesting energies from the canines, and also meeting Whitney and Jenna, producers for Haute Dog and The Jason Hennessey Podcast, and Whitney’s dogs.

[27:59] Cate and Jason talk about the day when Cate and her mobile pet grooming van made a house call to Jason’s family home. Cate runs down some of the vibes she felt while bathing and styling Archie, and also goes through her process of how she connects with a pet.

[33:12] Cate presents more energies she felt while she was grooming Archie. Jason and Bridget confirm her intuitions. They also tell us more about Archie’s personality and the purpose of Cate’s speciality visit.

[38:58] Cate notes that Archie has issues with nausea. Bridget explains that Archie takes medication for seizures and their oldest son had seizures in the past. Cate passess Bridget and Jason recommendations for Archie about things she notices he likes and can help calm his anxiety.

[48:49] Jason and Bridget ask Cate if she has any favorite breeds she likes to work with. She gives a quick run down of the different breeds she’s beautified and the easiest breed to groom.

[49:45] Jason and Cate transition into our signature segment, “Hennessey Heart-to-Heart.” Cate shares her best childhood memory, the world problem she’d fix, her best characteristic, philosophy on life, and more.

[57:28] Jason invites Cate to let us know how we can keep in touch with her. Cate gives us her website, studiogrooming.com, along with the pet products and services she offers, and also tells a quick story relating to an ideal-client question from Jason.

[59:55] Cate, Bridget, and Jason end today’s conversation. Jason sets up another grooming appointment with Cate for their other doggy, Chloe Hennessey.

Transcript

Jason Hennessey: Cate Garcia, thank you so much for coming to the studio.

Cate Garcia: Well, thank you for having me. This is very exciting.

Yes. And we have a couple cameos here today. I would get in trouble if I didn’t introduce my wife first, my wife, Bridget Hennessey.

Bridget Hennessey: Hello, Jason.

Thank you. And then we also have another little four-legged friend running around here. You’ll hear him panting.

Cate: He settled right at my feet.

Little Archie Hennessey as well. Yes. And he got to know you and we’re going to talk a little bit about that.

So, for those that are listening, tell everybody what you do for a living.

So what I do for a living and for a passion and a hobby is I work with animals. Specifically, 99% of my work is with dogs and cats, so as a professional pet groomer. And I’ve been doing that in a professional capacity for close to 30 years. As an amateur, I’d say I started at my dad’s knee, who was a veterinarian and a novice.

And I experimented and played with animals since I was a child. And experimented, I mean, haircut wise, just to be clear. But the medical side of it has always fascinated me too. So, most of my life and my working career has been with pets and children.

Got it. And do you come from a big family? A lot of siblings?

Yeah. I kind of tease that my father, being a veterinarian, had a litter. And I teased that my mom was a good Irish Catholic and had seven kids.

Oh my.

Bridget: Oh, wow.

Cate: So, I am the sixth of seven.

And were you the only one to kind of pursue an interest that was similar to your father with dealing with animals or what?

Yes. So we all did our time, as some would say, my siblings, in my father’s business, having to work for dad or coming to help dad, but I was the only one that took it up as a passion and as a profession.

I see. Got it. So going back to when you were a child, like you said, you probably spent some time at your dad’s, I guess, veterinarian clinic, would it be?

A hospital.

A hospital.

Small animal hospital. Yep.

And did you kind of know that this was your passion early in life or what?

I think my family knew it before I did, to be quite honest. Those around me saw how intrigued I was and how involved I would get with the pets. I don’t remember wanting toys really, ever. Dolls were never my thing, stuffed animals. I never really liked stuffed animals. I thought they were creepy because they were so inanimate where real pets actually talked to you. And I didn’t have to make-believe with them because there was, for me, a genuine conversation happening. I didn’t realize my family thought I was just making up stories that they were saying to me because I was actually telling everybody what they were saying. I didn’t realize there was a disconnect to that degree.

So, when I would go into the animal hospital, it was very interesting. Because you can imagine my introduction to pets were, a lot of them were sick, a lot of them were hurt, and they weren’t in their home. They were displaced so there wasn’t anybody really around them that, quote-unquote, “knew them.” So, it was a natural place for me to go stand by the cage and kind of chat. Say, “Hey, why are your eyes so big? Why are you so scared?” That kind of thing.

So, I would make up reasons not to go to school. I have to go stay with dad at his work.

I see.

So I kind of teased that I was raised in a kennel, and I was happy for it.

I kind of teased that I was raised in a kennel, and I was happy for it.

Now did you have family pets yourself?

Yes. My mom, ironically, was afraid of dogs and all the pets we got were misfits that either were being surrendered at my dad’s hospital, owners couldn’t either afford to fix them, or my dad took pity and would take a dog that was broken and sick, fix it himself and bring it home.

So we always had kind of the off-kilter pets, as my mom would say. He at one point brought home, I guess there was a confiscation of a baby, I think it was an alligator. And so that lived in our tub for about three days.

Is that right?

Bridget: Oh my-

Cate: So, my mom was like, “Seven kids and a crocodile, or an alligator, ain’t going to happen in Manhattan Beach.”

Bridget: Oh my gosh. There’s no way.

Cate: So I don’t know. I know. Can you imagine?

Bridget: [chuckles] No.

Cate: So I love reptiles. I’ve had snakes. I’ve had guinea pigs. I’ve had rabbits. I’ve temporarily had love birds, which is just, I think, an oxymoron of a term for those birds. Because they tend not to like each other after a bit.

Dogs, cats, rats. I did have the pleasure of pet sitting, for a while, a kangaroo. So that was an interesting job.

In the United States?

Yes. Yes, Santa Clarita actually.

Wow. I don’t see them very often.

Bridget: I have to ask you something. Would you choose a cat or a dog? That’s always like a question on Facebook.

Cate: So choose a cat or a dog. See, I’m always about like, for what?

So, right now I personally only have a cat. I just recently had a cat pass away quite suddenly. So it was pretty devastating.

I’ve always had dogs, but as I’ve gotten older, when you get home a dog’s like, “Hey, let’s go out for a walk. Let’s go for a run. Do you want to go hike?”

And so, I find myself what I get at home, I want a cat that goes, “Hey, you want to sit on the couch and have a glass of wine?” So, I have cats right now just because I don’t feel that I can get out there and give a dog quite the-

I want a cat that goes, ‘Hey, you want to sit on the couch and have a glass of wine?’

I like to have an animal in as close to the environment that they would naturally flourish in. And a dog needs, depending on the breed of course, there’s a lot of needs that I don’t feel I can meet, spot on right now, while I’m working a lot.

Got it.

I did have an older companion dog that would travel with me to groom and was in my shop. So, he did great.

I guess you grew up around this whole world, with your dad, you had animals at home, graduated high school, right?

No, I didn’t. I was enrolled in high school for 3 and a half years. Decided to-

So, they didn’t have the diagnosis of ADD, or dyslexia

ADHD.

…any of those things, when I was growing up. They just knew that there was something.

I believe when I was younger, I would read from left to right sometimes, or I would do this with the reading, like I would serpentine. And so, they went and had my eyes checked to see if my eye could see correctly and I would do eye exercises. But I just didn’t flourish in school, so it was challenging. And by the time I hit high school, I was pretty much a rebel.

That’s not bad.

No, no. It served me well. I feel like I have hindsight on it when I look back, of course. But back in the day I really could have been challenged, like I needed some kind of adventure, and growing up in Los Angeles, that was Hollywood.

So when did you then actually get it into the business that you’re in now?

Good question. So, being in high school, like I said, I’d go to my dad’s work. I worked for him temporarily and on holidays, or go help out.

And when I was there one summer working with colorful hair and embarrassing my father professionally. He’s like, “You must wear a hat while you’re here with that pink hair.” I’m like, “Okay, Dad.”

You were a rebel. Huh?

Yeah. And so, there was a Collie. I remember specifically the moment, and it was, my dad was going to do a large hip surgery on this Collie. It had- needed hip surgery. A collie is this big, beautiful Lassie dog, full coat, just gorgeous. And when you prep for surgery, you just take all that hair away. And I was mortified that I had to just wreck this beautiful coat on this dog.

And I’m like, “Dad, I can like braid the hair and lift it up and do like a comb over. So at least we’ll shave that part. And I could bring the hair back down over.” And he’s looking at me like, “The dog needs to walk.” He’s like, “Get your-”

So, it was really clear, I loved messing around with hair. And one of our clients happened to be a professional groomer and she would take on students privately. So my dad put two and two together and said, “I’m going to send you to grooming school.”

Cool.

So, he did that. I spent a year working as an apprentice and then he built a little space in his animal hospital and I started grooming.

Oh, nice. And you had a love for it. You just kind of knew right away that this was your calling, huh?

Yeah. And in the animal hospital, a lot of the pets would come into the animal hospital and show up that would get kicked out of grooming shops.

Interesting.

Grooming salons aren’t- Not all pets are conducive to us invading every square inch of their body in a really rapid way, and understandably so. And I respect that, but we would get the animals that needed to be fully anesthetized to be shaved.

And when I started doing haircuts, it’s really hard to get a balanced haircut on an animal that’s knocked out. Like you can’t get their ears straight. You can’t get the- I started wanting to make the aesthetics nice. So, I started challenging my dad and said, ” Hey, can we not anesthetize him? Just, let’s try to work with this animal. I know he bites.” And I said, “Maybe just sedate him.” And my dad’s answer to that is, like, “Well, sedation doesn’t make them not bite, they just let go slower.” I’m like, “So, fully awake. Let me just try it that way.”

And so, I was able to spend the time and figured out how not to get bit and why they were acting the way they were. And out of a necessity of not getting hurt and not wanting them to have to be knocked out, I figured out how to navigate these miscommunications, is what I call them now. They’re like miscommunications, misunderstandings.

Out of a necessity of not getting hurt and not wanting them to have to be knocked out, I figured out how to navigate these miscommunications.

Got it. Yeah. And it seems that you over- How long have you been doing this now?

Professionally, over 30 years.

30 years.

Yeah. Being paid for it, like as a profession, that I would call myself a groomer after I graduated. Prior to that I was in high school.

But it says here, so you’re not just a groomer, you’re also an aesthetician, a pet aesthetician.

So, the last 11 years I have dedicated to skincare issues with pets. It’s kind of a devastating roller coaster that a lot of pet owners and pets go through, to the degree that a lot of veterinarians are as frustrated with the problems as the owners are. I’ve seen both sides of that because I’ve worked in animal hospitals a lot. And I know that, oh, it’s so frustrating to have these reoccurring allergies and reoccurring skin issues. And a lot of veterinarians’ tool boxes of what they can do is pretty small.

I found a group out of Italy that was- I went to a trade show and they were selling their wares and they were showing the results of their products and their process and I thought, “There’s no way. There was no way.” I’m raised in an animal hospital. My dad was a veterinarian. I have seen the results of skin issues and none of them recover the way these photographs were showing.

So I dove in and bought a bunch of their products and put it to the test. And sure as heck, I was so surprised how a little bit of technique and understanding and process really could change and turn things around. And I was also mortified to know, as a pet groomer, I was actually contributing to some of the problems that we see chronically out there.

So, yes. I bought the products, got involved. A veterinarian in the United States bought the distribution rights and he has created a program. And so, thus, I became a certified pet aesthetician through a program with Dr. Faver, who’s a veterinarian and the product line is Iv San Bernard. It’s an Italian product.

And so, once I had worked with it for several years, we all got together and traveled to Italy, to the academy out in Italy. It was so fun. And I met groomers from Russia and from Spain and from Italy, of course, and from France. It was just a fantastic gathering. It was educational as well as fun, as only the Europeans know how to do.

Bridget: So aesthetician, like, what do you do as, like, for a dog?

Cate: That’s a very good question. That’s a very good question. And you’ll be surprised how similar it is. You’ve gotten a facial before. So I’ve gotten facials too, and you close your eyes and you’re like, what are they doing now?

Bridget: They have the steam on your face.

Cate: Right. There’s steam, but your eyes are closed and now they’re putting goo, and nope, goo on, goo off, goo on, goo off. You’re like, what is happening? I know so much more about my own skin just by learning what they’re doing. And the process is very similar. I have clays. I have masks and steam. I use an ozone therapy machine.

I was going to ask you about that.

Yeah. I have a machine that creates O3. And it’s got a tube and it pushes it through a specialized mat that infuses the water in a tub. So it’s kind of like a jacuzzi for them. They stand on this mat and it bubbles through. It’s really fun. And ozone is a natural antibacterial, antifungal, antiparasitic. It’s a very soothing, natural way to kind of get at yeast and bacteria that are usually the culprits. An imbalance of yeast and bacteria is usually the culprit of most of these things that go sideways.

Why they go sideways is a whole ‘nother thing, whether it’s autoimmune disease, whether it’s allergies, whether it’s a parasite.

Bridget: So that’s what the stuff helps with on their face?

I will do a mask on their entire body.

Cate: It’s everywhere, their entire body. So I will do a mask on their entire body. I will wrap them in a cellophane and a warm towel and let it sit for 20 minutes, pull it up. Then I exfoliate, rinse that off. And then you exfoliate with a proper appointed shampoo, whether it’s something for fungus and bacteria, whether it’s something for just a light allergy, an itchy skin. If they have oozy sores, then it’s a whole nother route we take.

The whole goal is to get them back to balance. That’s the whole goal with any of this. So I then do a shampoo and then I will rinse that and then I will come back on with another conditioner or moisturizer.

Two or three people may handle your pet at any given time. And then the grooming goes as fast or as slow as the pet allows, is usually what I say.

I see.

And it can change from day to day with the same pet. But once you’ve established a relationship with a dog, it ends up being like going into Cheers, and they know your drink and they know where you sit and they know your “isms.” And it gets to be a much faster process.

So, the first few groomings at a salon probably will take you longer. And then, some clients like to use my salon, I did have a brick-and-mortar, as a daycare.

Sure.

They were like, “I’m not coming back till 6. Take your time.” If you have those clients, then you have the other clients that are like, “I’m just going to wait outside the door.” And you’re like, “Um, that’s awkward.” For a salon that’s doing multiple dogs, you do have to be patient and it does take time. People always get concerned about their pet being at a place for so long.

Now, if that’s your concern as a pet owner, I would suggest you ask for a little tour before you even bring your dog in. “Can I just get a little peek of your place?” Or go down and do a meet and greet with your dog. Get a feel for the energy and the vibe of the place.

I see. Yeah.

And kind of go with your gut instincts. I’ve always told owners that are super nervous. “I don’t know if I should drop it off.” I’m like, “If you’re not sure, go with your instincts. Take your dog home. If you’re not sure, don’t do it.” Because your dog’s going to pick up on that vibe and be like, “Why are you dropping me off? You’re not even comfortable here. Why are you leaving me here?” Their eyes get big. They start to shake. And shaking’s not always the-

He’s coming to say, “Hi,” right now. Yeah.

Yeah, he is. He’s, “Dad, are you talking about me?”

So, follow your gut is what I tell the owner. Do a meet-and-greet. It’s well worth it. I’ve always encouraged nervous parents to come down and meet me first.

Got it. Okay.

It’ll save everybody a lot of heartache.

It’s interesting. So like Bridget said, we have a mobile dog groomer that comes to the house.

Bridget: They’re great.

Yeah. But it’s like every other Tuesday at 9:30 a.m., the doorbell rings, and the dogs know.

Cate: Absolutely.

Bridget: Oh, yeah.

Yeah. Chloe runs onto the bed. Archie’s under the table.

They both- It’s true.

They’re shaking. They’re like, we got to go grab them. Like, seriously. It’s like a whole…

Yeah, but they’ve been going for years now and I don’t understand why they’re still scared.

Yeah. I guess I’m curious.

Cate: I did notice Archie being like, a bit like, “Aaaugh.”

Yeah, uh-huh.

So, you’re not going to win all dogs over, but I can tell you that some of the dogs that I’ve had that are the- I take a lot longer than most groomers do. I don’t know if you noticed.

Yes.

Bridget: Yes.

Cate: Because I want to build a relationship.

Bridget: Yeah.

Cate: Everything I’m doing, I want to make sure that we’re on the same page with. A lot of dogs don’t like their feet touched, so this is a thing where I will just slowly do it.

He does not like his feet touched.

No, most-

And I want to talk about- So, she came and groomed Archie and spent a lot of time with him. We’re going to talk about that whole experience, but yeah.

Yeah. If the groomer had enough time- So, it’s hard to make a living and have a schedule where you need to do a certain- It’s quantity versus time and quality.

Yeah.

I can’t fault a groomer for having a packed schedule and needing to get to the next pet.

I got it.

So sometimes, that pressure is put onto the animal…

Bridget: Yeah.

Cate: …to move through a process. It’s so difficult though. It’s a difficult balance, and it’s the number one complaint of owners is, like, “It’s taking so long. Can I have my dog? Or can’t I get in tomorrow?” So groomers are trying to accommodate speed and quantity.

Yeah.

And then it would back up to having a really anxious, pressured grooming session.

I see.

Versus- It’s like an owner. I sometimes will tell owners, “It’s like asking your dentist to go as fast as they can on your kids’ teeth cleaning.” You’re like, “Hmm.”

Don’t want to do that.

Bridget: Hold still. The dog can feel that.

Cate: Oh my gosh. And it can feel when you’re checked out thinking, “Okay, I’m running 15 minutes late. I got to do this.” And it does, it travels through the brush, it travels through the clippers, it travels through the tug of war that happens. I think there’s a lot of tug of warring going on with him.

Yeah.

I’m like, “I’m not going to play that game. We’re going to do this together. This is a together thing.” But I feel very fortunate I’m in a place that I can do that. Now, I don’t want to say that every groomer’s, you know, they happen to have…

Understood.

…kids and meet a quota and get some money in. I get it.

Yeah.

But it is kind of a hard balance.

Yeah. Well, you’ve reached the most successful point of your career because I’ve heard that you were actually on or behind the scenes on a TV show for HBO?

Yep.

Is that right?

Yep.

What was that called?

Haute Dog.

Haute Dog. Okay.

Yeah, that was fun.

What a name.

That was fun. That was fun.

Yeah? How did that come about? I’m just curious.

I think Jess Rona is a groomer that’s pretty well known out here and she’s got a very big following. She actually worked for me. I became a grooming salon manager at a PetSmart many moons ago, and I was brought in to clean up. The grooming salon was a failing salon and they needed somebody to bring it back up, to the regional standards.

So, it was kind of like a Hail Mary. They hired me and brought me in, and Jess was one of the bathers there. I kind of assessed everybody who was working. Asked some people to move on. Wasn’t quite their forte, I could tell.

Jess Rona was hilarious. She made me laugh and she had a good nature about her.

Yeah.

Wasn’t really very good at her job, but I could work with that. So, I put clippers in her hand and said, “Look, this is how you start to trim.” So Jess Rona, I taught her how to do the basics and she’s gone on to do a beautiful career.

So come full circle, working with this skincare product. She was at one of the courses for a dog who was having skin issues. And she turned around. She’s like, “Hey, Garcia.” So we reconnected several years ago.

Yeah.

And she reached out to me. They needed a mobile groomer to be on site to help with the dogs before and after their TV moments.

Bridget: What was the show?

Haute Dog.

Cate: It was a grooming contest called Haute Dog.

Yeah. Oh, so it’s actually a grooming contest?

Yeah. They were contestants. The groomers were contestants…

I see.

…competing. And Jess Rona was one of the judges. I’m sorry to say I’m not familiar with the other two people that were judges.

That’s okay. Yeah.

But they were non-groomers. They were not in the grooming industry. So, I knew some of the contestants from trade shows that I’ve taught at. I’ve traveled and done the trade show circuit. So, a lot of these people were professional groomers. And some weren’t. Some were just people that applied and she let on the show. It was really great.

Huh.

Bridget: Wow.

So now, my wife and I, Bridget, we’ve got a son that’s in the acting business. Right?

Cate: Oh.

So there’s the stage moms, I guess, right?

Oh yeah.

Yeah. So I’m curious, was there stage doggy moms?

It was a whole new scene for me, to be quite honest. It’s a lot to ask of an animal to be groomed in the first place.

Sure.

Oh my gosh. Now stress out the groomer, put them under lights and cameras, and then there’s a whole level of animal care professionals that have to be on site making sure every animal is handled properly. It was just quite the amazing plate spinning, fur-flying circus.

It was just quite the amazing plate spinning, fur-flying circus.

Huh.

And I was grateful to be part of it, but not on camera for sure.

Yeah.

And I got a lot of interesting energy things from the dogs and that’s where I met one of your producers.

Yep, Whitney.

Both of your producers, actually.

Yeah, actually. Right.

Whitney. And there was some downtime and I was asked, “Can you bathe one of her dogs?” And I thought, this would be a good time, because I was taking classes to become an animal communicator.

Yes.

So, I know better now. I should have asked permission first.

Uh-huh, yeah.

But I’m like, “Sure, I’ll spend some time with her animals.” So, it was a calmer environment and even on- So, I washed one of her doggies and thought, “Oh, tell me what makes you happy. Tell me what bugs you.” I don’t even know what to ask when I get in there. I was like, just let’s just do this. And I’ve done it for a few of my clients.

It’s like Doctor Dolittle, right?

It kind of is.

Yeah.

You put your intuition that you already have with them already from my years of working with them…

Yeah.

…and kind of picking up what’s going on, but not anything outside of grooming. I’ve never really pushed it further. So, it was really fun. That’s where that kind of-

Yeah. Whitney had said that. Because when we’re looking for people to bring onto the show, and thank you for coming.

Yeah, absolutely.

Whitney was like, “Oh my God. You guys got to meet Cate,” because she cherishes her little dog. So, she’s like, “Yeah, she’s a great groomer. She was on a show with me. But she also was able to pick up things from my dog that I was like, ‘How the heck did she get this?’”

So, that’s the whole animal communicator thing.

Right.

I guess. And how long have you been doing that for?

Well, probably since I was born. I really have come to realize, thanks to your podcast. It’s really made me step back and think about the how’s and the why’s.

Yeah.

And the nuts and bolts of it. And I still consider myself a student in this, just to be clear.

Sure.

But this is something that I’ve always done, that I’m always surprised that people don’t understand when I’m saying, “Oh, your dog is doing that because he’s very nervous about this.” And they’re like, “What?”

Yeah.

“How’d you see that?” I’m like, “How do you not see that?” I’m unclear that it’s not clear.

Yeah.

So, I’m just taking that to the next level. And with COVID hitting and people having to slow down their careers and businesses, and I’m not a spring chicken anymore, and I thought, “Grooming’s very physical.” I wanted to do something less physical, still connected with animals and hands on.

So, I started taking some classes and I’ve been doing that for about 2 years, taking courses. And I finally got certified.

Wow.

As an intuitive.

That’s what it’s called, an intuitive?

Yeah.

Okay.

That’s what I refer to, but yes, I was certified as an intuitive through a course, and it was about a year and a half worth of work.

Huh.

And 99% of it is touching base with yourself, touching your center, calming your own self to allow the awareness to arise of what’s moving around near you.

Yeah.

It’s really about awareness.

Huh. So now, Monday morning, Whitney had set it up. You show up at our house.

99% of it is touching base with yourself, touching your center, calming your own self to allow the awareness to arise of what’s moving around near you.

Mm-hmm.

And you’ve got this beautiful van and it’s the perfect van to do what you want to do.

Yeah.

It makes it very comforting. So on the side, you hear “Yap, yap, yap, yap, yap!” Right?

Oh, first thing.

Our other dog.

Oh, first thing. Hot dog.

Bridget: Chloe.

Cate: First thing. Hopped up. Just like-

Chloe. Right? So Chloe’s our …

Bridget: She’s old.

Yeah, she’s 13.

Yes.

Right?

She’s an older girl.

I think she’s about 13, right?

Yeah. She’s 13. She doesn’t think so.

No, she doesn’t.

No.

She doesn’t act that way. And she’s a Miniature Schnauzer. She’s the boss in the house.

Cate: Oh, 100%. She’s probably the boss of the block, right?

Yeah, she is.

Yes.

But you’re not here to see Chloe, you’re here to see Archie, right?

Right.

Yeah, so we wanted to see, “Well, let’s let Cate spend some time with Archie and get to know him a little bit.” So, we got y’all set up, and then about- You were there almost 2 hours.

Two hours, yeah.

Yeah. Right?

Yep.

It’s a long time to get to spend some time with him. And I’m curious to know, after you closed that door, what happened in there during those 2 hours?

Bridget: Yeah. I can imagine.

I think we’re all curious, yeah.

Yes.

Yeah.

Cate: Well, you can’t burn sage and stuff like that. Animals don’t dig smoke. But I do, certainly, center myself prior to even coming out there. And I did ask that I get a picture beforehand.

Okay.

Because I’m working on some of the remote process, because it is a thing that you can do, communication remotely, and I’m working on that as well.

So, I first start in a place that makes me comfortable. It’s almost like when you start to drive a car. When you first learn to drive, you’re nervous, but now you can drive and probably change a radio station and eat a sandwich, but you couldn’t when you first started.

That’s right.

I realize with this, I need to be in a comfortable space, so grooming is what I do.

Yeah.

And that’s my comfortable space. And it also takes them a little bit out of their environment, so I’m not infiltrating their environment. At some point, I hope to be able to go into homes and see. But it’s more of a neutral ground. And a little bit nervous. I’m not going to lie, most dogs are- This is not what their idea of a great time is.

Yeah.

And Archie was no exception: nervous, shaking.

Yeah.

Separation anxiety. He could hear everybody going around outside. Sometimes, I’ll put music on pretty loud so it kind of muffles some of the sounds. He knows his family’s around, which is okay, because it makes them secure, but it’s still- It’s hard for them to connect with me when they’re busy with everybody else. But it took a little time.

And then he finally, like- I just spent some time on the table with him, massaging him, just going through with brushes and combs, and brought him up on the- And then started the bathing process. And at that point, what I try to do is separate out imagination from intuition.

Okay.

And information coming in, and then my wild imagination going bonkers.

Yeah.

Which is hard for someone with ADHD.

Sure.

My theory with attention deficit disorder, I’m like, I don’t think I have a deficit. I pay attention to freaking everything.

Too much.

It’s a deficit to the teacher, maybe. That’s their problem. So, clearing my mind and just connecting.

Now, ironically, I’ve realized when I start to connect, I start with, “I’m at your door or I’m with you. I want you to take me on a walk. What do you love about your place?” And then I also say, “Or what’s concerning you?” So, I’ll just work with a dog. And usually, it honestly takes about 7 minutes. I don’t know where the thoughts are going.

And are you massaging him at this time?

And just doing- I’m grooming. I’m bathing and I’m washing, but I am slowing everything down, so it does take time. I’m making the shampoo and I’m massaging him and trying to really- And then all of a sudden, I’ll start to get things that pop through.

When I first touched in with Archie, I think I had said to you, not even when I met him, but with the pictures, I felt like something came down across the front of me and I might have been up and I might have hopped back. It was a nervous thing.

When I met him, I could see that he could probably startle pretty easy if something fell off a shelf or fell across the front of him, so that was one thing that happened that I-

Yeah.

Bridget: I still don’t know. Me and the kids were trying to figure it out. Did anything fall in front of him?

I don’t know. Yeah. When we first got him, we took him right from the place to the pet store.

Cate: Okay.

You’re like, let’s go get some treats.

Yeah.

And some toys. He was just walking in between my legs, he was not comfortable.

Just too much. Yeah. And he still, he very much needs a leader.

Yeah.

I mean, obviously, he was right behind you the whole time.

Exactly.

You couldn’t even get him in front of you in the- Yeah.

That’s true.

Bridget: He needs a leader and that’s …

Chloe’s his leader.

I can’t wait to tell her everything about him.

Yeah.

I want her to tell us and then me to tell her.

Cate: Right, right, right.

Yeah.

And so, I did take some notes. It was an interesting- and I was trying to explain it and I’m not quite sure. It might have been around the timeline that you’ve got Archie, but it was like Archie filled a spot of a sibling. You remember me talking about that?

Bridget: Yes. Yes. Me and my son were like, “What?”

Cate: And I’m just not sure if it was- So, part of me thought maybe it was either have another baby or get a puppy kind of thing.

Bridget: Oh no, we were done after that.

It could have been for a sibling for Chloe possibly.

Cate: Possibly. Well, see, I didn’t realize you had another …

See? At the time when you’d just seen the photo.

Right, so I felt like Archie is filling a sibling like role for somebody, a playmate, and I was thinking of your daughter only because the pink on the leg, thinking “Okay, did somebody have an art day?”

Bridget: We still don’t know how that happened.

Cate: And I realized both of them have it, so that’s definitely kind of a marker.

Bridget: Yes.

Cate: And someone might not be fessing up to what happened is what I’m going to say there. I just felt like there’s a playmate, sibling kind of vibe for Archie, but not so much for Chloe. Chloe is a dog’s dog, even though you put her in a dress and everything.

Bridget: We did get Archie for Brooklynn.

Yeah.

That’s something we wanted …

Cate: Your daughter?

Yeah.

Bridget: Yes.

Cate: Okay.

There you go. So there it is.

Yes. Okay, I got a really big hit that this is a sibling relationship, more than a- And it has fruited. That’s fruition. It’s come to fruition.

Sure.

And when your daughter said- She spoke- She’s doing what I did, and I said, “Well, we don’t know. We got to see if Archie will want you to be in here.” And she’s like, “Oh, he does.” And you guys are like, “Ha-ha-ha.” I’m like, “No, she really does.” She really is telling you. That’s how I used to do it.

Yeah.

Bridget: Yeah.

Cate: And then I grew up out of it because I was told as a person that that doesn’t happen.

Bridget: I just wanted her to have something because my boys had Chloe. They grew up with Chloe.

Cate: Right.

Bridget: Chloe’s old. She’s not going to want to play around and run around and things. So I told Jason, I said, “We need to get another dog for her because she’s little.”

Cate: That makes more sense to me.

That’s exactly what happened.

That was the energy. That was the energy that I was picking up on.

Bridget: Okay.

Cate: This dog was sent to you for that. You put the energy out there and someone up there that’s helping you out went, “Oh, here’s the pet.”

Yeah.

Bridget: Yeah.

Got it.

And I think…

Cate: Okay, that settles…

Bridget: …there’s just why we’ll get into that. But I think there’s a reason why Archie chose us. Yeah, I do.

Cate: Okay. Right. Okay. I- Oh, I’d like to hear that story later.

So, and then I feel like there’s a show and tell, or a group therapy. This dog is doing a therapeutic type of job for you, but also I think it could be in the community as well. Take her to class or at a park, someone’s pet day, or I don’t even know if they have show and tell anymore in schools.

Bridget: Yeah. He’s not allowed to go to the schools.

Cate: Schools aren’t even in session-

No, I know. Yeah.

…so I’m not sure, or maybe it’s for…

He would be the perfect dog for that.

…not a girl scout, but maybe some other kind of group event. He’d be good at that.

Yeah.

Archie’s not a big fan of the heat. I know where you live can get very hot. I lived out there. I picked up on that before I even saw him. But seeing how he’s like a fair skinned person with the red outlines, the red points. Heat’s not his thing. Almost like he runs hot already. And that escaping that heat outside is something…

And he took me to what felt like the coolness under like where a citrus tree was, was a spot that’s like, “Oh yeah, this is where I go and spread out or I like the citrus tree,” but I felt like it was an orange tree, but it’s definitely a citrus tree and it has flowers and birds and it keeps him occupied, but it’s also a spot where he chills.

Okay.

Bridget: You know which he goes behind is the rosemary bush. That’s not a citrus, but then he goes over by the gate, you know where our neighbor is- That’s a lemon tree. Maybe that’s- I was telling her that.

Cate: It’s a place that, it’s cooler, whatever it is. It’s cooler there than the yard.

Bridget: He always goes behind the rosemary bush. That’s, yeah.

Cate: Rosemary’s, maybe. The neighbor’s tree I’ll give it, but rosemary’s- So one thing about me is I’m the most skeptical person of this stuff that you’ll ever meet. Rosemary’s a maybe, the citrus tree I think has more to do with it over there.

Okay.

Bridget: But he doesn’t go lay over there. He barks.

Yeah.

Cate: Oh, interesting. Yes.

Bridget: So if he goes over there, he is barking at the neighbor because the kid antagonizes him.

Cate: Archie barks?

Bridget: Yes. Oh, yes. A lot.

Yeah. You wouldn’t think so.

Cate: He looks like you just tattle tailed on him. He’s like, “I don’t bark. I’m very subdued.”

Bridget: By the way, he’s a Goldendoodle if everybody wants to know. Yeah.

Cate: Yeah, he’s a Goldendoodle.

He’s a golden doodle, yeah.

Cate: I put “happy place.” So I don’t know. Maybe he, I’m not sure, but it also is something about the heat over in that area. So when I tapped in, you did let me know, in fairness, that there was a medical thing that you were interested in. So I did know that, so part of my training is to tap in empathetically and scan the body and whatever’s going on, scan through me and pick up. When I started to do that at this point, I think I was drying Archie and it’s starting to happen again. I’m getting nauseous. You know how your salivary glands get a little…

Yeah.

Something upsets my stomach. Now, it was much stronger in my van than it is at the moment. And he was nervous. So I was thinking maybe nervousness or maybe time of day, but I really got the sense of kind of a goofy stomach, like with medication or like kind of what you get with vitamins. It makes your stomach kind of funky.

Yeah.

Not like you ate something bad, but more like something’s not- And I said, “It feels like a medicated- it’s a supplement or a medication that makes you nauseous a little bit.”

That was the feeling that you thought he was getting.

Yeah. Yeah. And then he was- started to drool a little bit like just a tiny bit of drips came out of his mouth. That is a sign of nausea for dogs. Just a little bit. The first thing I wrote was digestion and tummy and nerves. So this could be something that happens or is exacerbated by a nervous environment, like the grooming van. So, he doesn’t seem like it now as much, nearly as much.

Bridget: Should I explain?

Yeah, go ahead.

Bridget: So, Archie has epilepsy.

Cate: Oh, he does?

Bridget: He has epilepsy and he has had it since-

Puppy.

…a puppy. He was on a medication. It was Keppra. They put him on and now he’s on phenobarbital.

Cate: Phenobarbital, okay.

Bridget: He has seizures. The last one he had was last- when you were out of town-

Last week.

Last week, he had a pretty bad one and he- He has them.

Cate: So they’re grand mal seizures?

Bridget: Oh, he has really bad seizures. He loses control of his legs. Drooling-

Drinks so much water, yeah.

He was thrashing a little bit this past one. He’s done that a few times. So that’s what he has. Maybe the medication that he’s on is making his stomach upset. So, when you said his stomach, that’s why I was a little like, “Oh, maybe the medication,” but I wanted to wait to see.

Cate: Yeah, and I don’t know, I’m familiar with phenobarbital, but I don’t know that it’s a- I’ve never heard of it inducing nausea. But how do we really know? But, interesting.

Bridget: Yeah.

Cate: Because I actually wrote autoimmune disease up here which isn’t necessarily seizure related. That’s more neurological.

Yeah. Yeah.

And he’s 3? He’s 3 years old?

Bridget: Yeah. He is 3, yes.

Cate: He’s pretty young for having them.

Bridget: Yeah. He has really bad- It’s not fun.

Cate: No. Especially in a big dog. It’s very, any dog, but in large dogs it’s-

Bridget: The reason I said that I think he chose us is because my son, my oldest one, you didn’t meet him, you met my middle one, he had epilepsy.

Cate: Oh Interesting.

Bridget: And so, I honestly believe-

Cate: So, you say “had”?

Bridget: He grew out of it. My older son grew out of it. And then-

Cate: Was that before you had Archie or after?

Yeah.

Bridget: Yes, it was before. And then we got him and it was almost like he chose us because we knew how to deal with epilepsy.

Cate: Ah, I see. And you’re sympathetic to it. It’s not completely like, you know, people and animals live with this. It’s not going to take you back because, or whatever.

Sure.

Bridget: It’s like epilepsy follows us. I mean, not to bring my brother-in-law into this, but his fiance just had two seizures this past week and it’s like, epilepsy just follows our family.

Cate: Well, they do. So they do say that animals will take on issues of the owners or the environment.

They do say that animals will take on issues of the owners or the environment.

My cat was fine and I had to go to Hawaii to help my brother who was really sick. And part of his illness had to do with some congestive heart failure issues coming on. And he’s on the road to recovery where he is doing really well now, thank goodness I got home.

And like 7 days later, my 8-year-old cat jumped in my lap and was breathing funny. Brought him to the emergency room, was dead by the next morning of congestive heart failure.

Bridget: Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry.

Oh my God, I’m so sorry.

Cate: How did that-? And I can’t help but think that there’s an absorption of like, issues in a healing manner to- “I’ll take this and I’m going to move on. Your brother can stay,” kind of thing.

Yeah.

Bridget: Yeah. So I think he knew, these are people that are going to take care of me and understand.

Cate: That makes sense. That makes sense that there was a reason that this dog is with you as a sibling.

There was a reason that this dog is with you as a sibling.

Bridget: I believe that. One hundred percent.

Cate: Yeah. And as a sympathetic, you know, and to your daughter now having been exposed to a brother, possibly, I don’t know if he was already,

It was before her time, yeah-

Cate: I was going to say. But who knows, what that will do for her-

Later on in life.

Correct. She knows about it. “Oh, it’s a family thing.” And maybe, you know, a crusade to figure it out.

Exactly, yeah.

I didn’t even notice, does your house have an upstairs?

It does.

Okay. I was there in all fairness, I didn’t even pay attention to the house structure-

That’s fine.

…but I feel like there’s an upstairs probably where the bedrooms are. I’m either in a crate. That’s kind of a wooden crate with slats or I’m at a foot of a bed. “That’s where I rest.”

Yeah.

Bridget: He does.

Cate: Okay, “That’s a place where I sit.” I don’t know if I’m looking at it from, like, his perspective, but I can’t see the whole picture. So I don’t know if it’s a crate or if it’s a-

Not a crate, no.

…footboard.

Bridget: No, it’s the end of the bed.

Cate: Footboard, okay. Then I got this picture of him laying on his side, like pawing under something to get something out. I don’t know if this is a kid’s room and where he is getting stuff out from under a bed, but I can see him laying on the side trying to get something.

He’s notorious for stealing shoes

Bridget: And he stole your jeans this morning.

I know I had to go get them from him. Yeah, so that’s the thing at our house. Anytime somebody comes over, the boys will have a friend sleep over-

Cate: Remember when I told you he plays keep away?

Bridget: Yes.

Cate: That’s what it must be. That’s the keep away.

That’s what he does. Like that’s his thing. He

He doesn’t chew it, but he takes it.

Bridget: He takes it.

He just takes one shoe, he doesn’t take both.

Cate: Okay, yeah. See, I wrote-

He plays this game with everybody.

Yeah. I said, “A good game of keep away,” is what I wrote that day.

Bridget: What does that mean? Why does he take that? He’s playing a game with us?

Cate: Why not?

Bridget: He does it at night when we’re sleeping.

Yeah.

Cate: Oh my gosh.

Yeah.

He’s very sophisticated.

Bridget: And then people will come over. The boys’ friends will come over and they’ll be like, “Where’s my other shoe?”

I don’t know where I…

“I put it right next to the-”

Who would separate shoes? You just don’t do that, right?

And we’re like, ” Archie.”

“Archie.” Go check under our bed and then sure enough, it’s always the same spot.

Cate: It’s under the bed?

It’s always the same spot.

Bridget: It’s always the same exact spot.

Cate: So that’s when I’m seeing him…

Mm-hmm.

Okay. Good job, Archie. Very sophisticated.

That’s funny. Keep away.

Yeah. I wrote keep away.

Bridget: That’s hilarious.

Cate: Oh, interesting. Okay. I wrote here. “Rest is really important to him” and, “I have a headache.”

Huh.

Bridget: Huh.

Well he goes like this a lot.

Cate: But I’m wondering if the seizures create any kind of precursor as a headache.I don’t know. Did your son ever get headaches or was it? It’s just that-

Bridget: No. He had a different kind of epilepsy.

Cate: I just put important to him is rest. And he’s waiting for someone to get home. There’s a spot where he waits and then, “Sometimes I’ll go to that place where- when I get a headache.”

So, this is where my imagination pushes on intuition. So, I’m not sure. And I thought, “Well, maybe somebody in the house has migraines and he rests with them when they have a migraine.” But now, with you saying epilepsy, I’m thinking it’s him. It’s his head.

Yeah, it is, probably.

Does he go to a place before he has a seizure? Does he know it’s coming and then he goes-

Bridget: He did, he jumped up on me.

Yeah.

The last one he had, he jumped up on me and I was like, “Oh, boy. It’s coming.” And I put him down.

Cate: When he had his first epileptic thing did he fall?

The first time I noticed it was in my office…

Bridget: Yeah, it was in your office.

…and he just lost control of his legs. And he didn’t know what to do. He was trying to get up, but he couldn’t get up. He just completely lost control of his legs. We didn’t know what it was. We brought him to the doctor and then they, yeah.

Cate: Yeah.

Bridget: Well, no. We just brought him to the vet and they did blood work.

Then we brought him to the vet.

And then we brought him another one, eventually, and we took him to the neurologist.

Cate: I think there’s something that- How do I explain this? So, what I’m seeing is a person in a room that is either on a headset playing like a video game or a Zoom call or talking to somebody else really engaged, and he’s in the room, but he feels like he’s part of the conversation. He’s being talked to, he enjoys it.

Yeah.

It feels like someone’s talking to him.

Well, his thing is he watches TV.

Bridget: Yes.

Cate: You did show me that. I did see that picture. Okay.

Okay, so that’s his thing. He’s the first dog I’ve ever- He would literally watch the whole movie and get into it. I’ve never seen a dog like that before, that would watch a movie.

Cate: He’s like a human.

Bridget: That’s it. I said, he’s more human than he is dog.

Cate: He really is. I think he was a human in his past life.

Bridget: Sure. I think you’re right.

Cate: I really do.

Bridget: I think you’re right.

He sat there and watched Racing in the Rain or whatever it was, that dog movie, and me and Zach sat there and we’re like, “He’s watching this whole movie.”

He was into it.

We’re like, “Holy shit. Do you want some popcorn…

Cate: Why not?

Bridget: …with your movie?”

Cate: So, that’s probably exactly it. And I didn’t put that together because I did see the picture of him looking at the television, but I felt it’s hilarious because they’re not really talking to him, but he feels it’s-

He’s part of the movie.

Right. Right. So it’s working for him.

So do you have any favorite breeds to work with?

Bridget: I was going to ask her that.

Cate: It’s a good- As a groomer, you think we’d get a lot of purebred dogs. Because I’m a pet groomer, so most of the pets I get are mixed. But there are breeds that have personalities and then there’s coat type. So, breeds that I like to work with? Honestly, I believe Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are probably the easiest dogs to…

Bridget: Oh, they’re so cute.

Cate: …trespass, if you will. They’re not as guarded, and they’re amicable, mostly. But they do come with a whole list of health issues, as well, from their breed.

So, I’m a big fan of cross breeding and mutts, if you will. One German lady referred to her dog as a street cocktail, which I thought was hilarious. “It’s a street cocktail.”

I’m a big fan of cross breeding and mutts.

Well, we play this thing at the end called “Hennessey Heart-to-Heart,” where I just ask questions and then you just answer whatever comes to mind.

Okay. Sounds good.

So there it is. It’s really easy. So, first question is: what is your best childhood memory?

Probably walking in the tide pools with my dad. We had some property up in Santa Barbara and we’d go there in the summers. And, of course, I didn’t realize how spoiled we were back then, but it really bonded me with the ocean and the creatures in it. I used to sit for hours and play with hermit crabs, and get them to change shells, and I’d collect them and we’d have games. And every day it was different because the tide would come in and out.

Awesome. Do you ever go to the tide pools to kind of-?

All the time, it is my north. It is my center. It’s where I go to remember and reconnect and go, “Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah.”

Oh yeah. Do you have any phobias?

I’m working on them. I don’t like feet.

No?

No. I mean, I like my feet and I like baby feet, but I don’t like people looking at my feet. If I don’t know you well enough, you shouldn’t be looking at my feet, even if I’m wearing flip flops. And so, whenever I tell people that, they instantly like- So, my feet are covered today so I-

Bridget: I know. I want to see your feet now.

Cate: And then, I’ve hurt people for touching my feet when they weren’t supposed to.

Bridget: So, you don’t like pedicures?

Cate: No, they’re torturous. But I get them, but it’s just like, I close my eyes and I’m like, “Okay. I can get through this. I can get there.” “So do you want to massage?” “Nope. Nope. Nope. Just get this done.” So I’m getting better though.

I literally did some EMDR therapy over it. So that’s how dumb it is for me.

If you had the power to correct one problem in the world, what would you fix?

Pollution, probably. Pollution. You know a world problem, an earth problem, would be pollution.

Sure. What’s the best concert you’ve ever attended?

Oh wow. There’s been so many. So, as a punk rocker, it was definitely the Dead Kennedys. Yep. Love them. I went to an Elton John concert that was just phenomenal.

And, actually, one of the funnest ones was a bluegrass concert I went to after O Brother, Where Art Thou?. I love the music from the O Brother, Where Art Thou? and they brought a lot of those bluegrass players to the Hollywood Bowl. That was a blast.

Oh, that’s awesome.

That was so different, and such a blast, and so impressive. Not a lot of lights, not a lot of smoke and mirrors, just these individuals up there fiddling away as fast as they can. So, that was a really great concert.

Awesome. Are you inspired by any celebrities, dead or alive, and what inspires you about them?

So, dead or alive. So, one is definitely a celebrity and one would probably be a semi-celebrity. Most influential and inspirational was Joseph Campbell.

Okay. Who’s that?

He’s an author. He was a theologian, an author, and I bumped into him 30-some years ago, watching PBS with Bill Moyers, I think is his name, was the interviewer, and the subject was “The Power of Myth.” He wrote a book called The Hero’s Journey and he kind of cracked open the world for me as far as religion, and philosophy, and making me a deeper thinker.

So that, and then David Bowie. I love David Bowie.

David Bowie. Here’s one, if you were a specific dog breed, which breed would you be?

Probably a Schnauzer.

Is that right?

Yeah. They’re small, compact, but if you rub them the wrong way, you’re going to know it.

Bridget: That’s a good question. I wonder what I would be.

Think about it. I might come back to you, Bridget. What’s something on your bucket list?

Cate: Actually, changing my career to be an animal communicator, full-time. Yeah. I’m pushing it hard.

You’re on your way there.

Yep. I’m pushing it hard, and finish the book that I started. Those two things that are- I’m working on those two things.

Yep. What’s a song that always puts you in a good mood?

Pretty much anything by Jackson Browne.

If the world ended tomorrow, what would you do on your last day?

If the world was ending tomorrow. I get a full day right?

Yeah.

I get morning till night.

Bridget: Go to Disneyland.

There you go.

Cate: Go to the tide pools with my family. I would go to the beach. 100% go to the beach, eat lox and bagels and cream cheese and avocado, and then probably have sushi. And play with my grandkids in the sand and tide pools, for sure. Make sure dolphins were coming.

Speaking of grandchildren, how would your children describe you? And how many children do you have?

I have two children. I wanted a boy and a girl and I got that. And I wanted them 3 years apart and I got that.

Bridget: Oh wow. That’s awesome.

Cate: They would probably- Intense, but truthful. Probably very giving, at the same time.

Good characteristics. And what do you see as your best characteristic?

Knowing how to admit when I’m wrong.

Okay. That’s hard to do.

Yeah. It’s something I’ve worked at, and I’ve embraced, and really now, I’m wrong a lot, and it teaches me a lot, so I’m okay with it.

I’m wrong a lot, and it teaches me a lot, so I’m okay with it.

What’s something weird about you, besides the feet thing?

I feel like what isn’t weird about me? Being an animal communicator effing isn’t weird enough, right? That I like peanut butter and cheese together.

Okay. That’s a little weird.

That’s pretty weird, huh? Sharp cheese with a little bit of peanut butter.

What’s your most unusual talent besides anything that we talked about today? Because I think being a dog communicator is a little unusual talent. What else?

Talent wise? I don’t know. Is that a talent?

I can’t do it. She’s crossing her fingers. That is a talent.

Bridget: Oh no, I can’t do that. I’d have to try to like-

That’s different. Yeah. I’ll give you that.

Cate: If I could get paid for it. Talent, I would think, is something you could actually market.

It’s not an easy question to answer.

It’s not an easy question because I don’t know if that’s a talent, but it’s odd.

Yeah. Every time I ask somebody that they stop and they think like, “Wow. That’s a good question.” What is your philosophy on life?

My philosophies on life, obviously they’ve changed over time, but that it’s to be embraced and it’s to be examined. And I know for me, I get lost in the weeds sometimes. So my philosophy is, definitely, have the vision of maybe the hawk once in a while, or an eagle, so that you get the bigger picture. It’s so easy to get stuck on the wheel and you kind of figure out what’s next and how to be better, how to be better at what’s next. That’s what I’m trying to do. I’m trying to figure out what is next and how to be better at that.

I’m trying to figure out what is next and how to be better at that.

That’s awesome. Good way to look at life. Bridget, thank you for coming and being a part of this.

Bridget: Thank you for having me, my husband.

Archie is here, and most importantly in this episode, Cate, thank you.

Cate: Well, thank you very much for having me. I really appreciate the- I’m not going to lie, I was nerve wracked. I was nerve wracked but it’s what’s next and how do I do it better? So, you’ve given me that opportunity to try to push forward on my life philosophy.

Well, we appreciate it and Archie certainly appreciates it. He got to know you, you got to know him a little better. We learned a little bit more from this episode.

And so, for anybody that might be listening to this episode, and they either want an amazing dog groomer or a dog communicator to come get a session, how do they get in touch with you?

So I do have a website at studiogrooming.com, and you can go there and you can contact me through the- My phone number is on the website. I also sell some of the products that I spoke about. And the animal communicator part of it’s under construction, but it’s coming.

That’s okay. And will you travel for the communications stuff?

Yeah. I don’t have a problem traveling. I prefer to see people and talk to people in person as much as- You can do this animal communication via Zoom and through photographs. Obviously, if people are in other countries, it’s difficult, but I love to travel and meet people, so.

And who’s your ideal client?

My ideal client is someone who is curious and wanting to understand something. I almost feel sometimes I’m a mediator or an interpreter, to a degree.

My ideal client is someone who is curious and wanting to understand something.

For instance, yesterday, a woman brought her dog over to me and the dog’s, bah-bah-bah-bah, bouncing off the end of its harness, and just going every which way. And she’s talking about the other dog that’s perfectly calm. And I’m like, “Can you just hold a minute on this one?”

And I walked it a little bit, it was terrified of me. I just said “Your dog’s really confused and doesn’t know what you want. She’s like, “Really?” I’m like “Yeah. That’s what’s happening here.” I’m like, “You’ve got to get clear on what it is you want this dog to do and figure out a way to communicate that.”

And so, everything she was doing was communicating the opposite. So, it was just like an interpretation.

I see. Well, awesome. Well, thank you again. This will not be the last time we see you. We’ll have you at the house again to hang out with Archie and maybe even give Chloe some love, too.

Oh, I would love to get my hands on Chloe. She’s probably got a lot to say.

Well thank you so much.

Thank you for having me.

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