Make Dog Grooming Your Career
If you love dogs and think working with them each day would be fun, dog grooming is an excellent profession. Dog groomers do more than cut a dog’s hair. They check for mats, complete sanitary check-ups, and groom dogs so they turn out smelling and looking good.
Experienced dog groomers can work virtually anywhere and they can also display their skill and creativity in competition at regional trade shows. In addition, passionate groomers gain lifelong friendships with their clients and pets, which can provide a steady income. With at least 70 million dogs in the United States, dedicated groomers are always in need. Fortunately, becoming a dog groomer is easy given the number of dog grooming schools located across the country as well as the availability of grooming classes online. Read on to find out how you can become a dog groomer.
Dog Groomer Job Description
Professional dog groomers work with all dogs, meaning they must have the knowledge and insight to groom all breeds, mixtures, coat types, and personalities. They also have many responsibilities, including interpreting the client’s wishes, maintaining the salon, sanitizing tools in between clients, and, of course, grooming dogs.
The actual grooming process involves properly bathing and drying dogs, removing mats, and completing a haircut specific to the dog’s breed and owner’s lifestyle. Although grooming dogs is no easy feat, once a groomer learns the tricks of the trade, he will groom for life.
Dog groomers are responsible for:
- Cleaning ears
- Trimming nails
- Completing breed-specific haircuts
- Interpreting client requests
- Completing sanitary clips
- Bathing and drying according to coat type
- Cleaning workplace and sanitizing grooming tools
- Instructing clients regarding their dogs
Dog groomers can work in many places, including grooming salons, animal shelters, veterinary clinics, and pet supply stores. They can even take their services on the road and start a mobile grooming business.
Dog Groomer Requirements
Currently, there are no educational requirements to become a professional dog groomer. However, taking online dog grooming courses or obtaining a dog groomer certification can greatly increase your chances of being hired. When you enroll in a dog grooming school, such as Animal Behavior College, you gain an educational foundation, which you can apply in a real work environment. As with any formal training for a profession, it’s important to learn the terms, history, and intricate details of the job before diving into it.
As important it is to learn the basics of dog grooming, there is nothing like getting experience. Employers want to know you have worked in a professional environment. Enrolling in a school that offers hands-on training in a pet grooming salon combined with practicing on family pets can provide you the experience you need to get hired.
Aside from education and experience, dog groomers must have patience and a love for animals. Working with dogs isn’t always a pleasant time. Dogs can be difficult, especially when they fear the sound of high-velocity dryers or are unable to stay still on the grooming table. Therefore, it’s important you experience grooming all dog types as much as possible before entering the salon. Doing so not only ensures you have the skills to make it as a dog groomer, but also the passion to make it your career.
Mobile Grooming and Grooming Salons
The main difference between mobile grooming services and grooming salons is convenience. Mobile groomers can take their business anywhere they choose, giving them flexibility and freedom. Since each groom is completed outside of the dog’s home, mobile grooming saves dog owners the time and stress of having to transport their pets to a brick-and-mortar salon. Grooming one dog at a time also allows the dog to relax without being distracted by other pets. As a result, a mobile groomer can charge more than a salon groomer.
Keep in mind mobile groomers must strategically plan their appointments and pay for travel expenses. They have to consider the time spent driving from one house to another house, rush hour traffic, and the amount of time performing a complete groom of each dog.
In contrast, dog grooming salons can take in more dogs at a time since there is usually a team of groomers working there. Dogs can enjoy more space and breaks in between baths and haircuts. For the client, going to a grooming salon is a less expensive choice as compared to using a mobile groomer.
Job Outlook for Dog Groomers
Dog grooming is a booming industry and it’s only going to continue to grow, as pet ownership increases. Six out of 10 pet owners consider their pets family members, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). In addition, the dog grooming industry is expected to grow by 15 percent, adding 35,400 jobs to the market from 2012 to 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
If you’re serious about a career as a dog groomer, please fill out the form on the right or call (800) 795-3294.