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East Valley salon owner forced to stop special pedicure

PHOENIX — The case focuses on feet and fish, specifically, tiny carp with no teeth that nibble off dead skin.

Cindy Vong offered the “spa fish” pedicure at her East Valley salon until the state cosmetology board forced her to stop.

According to state rules, any pedicure tool or equipment must be disinfected and placed in dry storage. You can’t do that with fish, but Vong’s attorneys say she protected customers by cleaning their feet first and sanitizing the tanks after each use.

Vong is being represented by the Goldwater Institute, which argues the entrepreneur is being saddled with irrational and arbitrary regulations. The fish pedicures are legal in several states while more than ten have banned the practice.

The trial gets underway Monday morning at Maricopa County Superior Court and is expected to last two days.