My wife Joella and I bought our first Airedale, Fleetwood Superstar, in 1971. We didn't know much about dogs and even less about the Airedale breed, but we wanted a well-trained dog. We enrolled Star in an obedience class and she did very well. Upon the suggestion of Star's trainer we began taking her to obedience matches where we met Dick and Linda Benson. Dick and Linda became good friends of ours and encouraged us to continue showing our dog. Dick and Linda owned two Airedales that were outstanding workers, which inspired us to continue showing in obedience.
When we brought Star into our family, we assumed that all Airedales grew up looking like the ones we had seen in pictures; however, we soon learned that Airedales need to be skillfully groomed to maintain show quality coats. Fortunately, an Airedale breeder named June Dutcher of Coppercrest Kennels lived near by. I phoned her and she told me to bring Star to her kennel and she would give me some grooming tips. June felt that learning to groom a dog should be a "hands-on" experience and I soon found myself grooming every dog in her kennel. I began to notice that the tools used for terrier grooming, called "stripping knives" needed great improvement and being of an inventive mind, I decided to create my own line of stripping knives. June was delighted with the ones that I had made and encouraged me to make them for other breeders and groomers.
A well-known handler by the name of Rick Chashoudian had just begun showing June's dogs. June gave him some of my knives to try and he took them with him to the Westminister Dog Show. The knives were a great hit, and our business began.
The first knife we began crafting was the "Regular Contour Handled". Another close friend, Arden Ross, helped us develop our next knife, the "Finishing or Straight Handled" knife and also became a great help with her dog grooming tips. At the request of handlers such as Wood Wornall and Mike Kemp, the "Reinforced Stripper" was created. They needed an extra sturdy knife and liked the additional weight. The latest addition to our product line is the "Special." It is another heavy-duty knife.
Pearson Products is a team effort. I handle the actual hand crafting of the knives while my wife, Joella, handles the business details such as taking orders, answering the telephone, and the toughest job of all -- cracking the whip on me!!
The two of us would like to thank everyone that has helped us over the past 34 years in creating this successful and enjoyable business. There are many people that have not been mentioned, but you know who you are and we thank you. Over the years we have learned that "dog people" are not only a unique breed of people unto themselves, but that they are some of the best people that we have ever dealt with.