How do I start a career in dog grooming?

  • Date: June 12, 2021
  • Time to read: 5 min.

If you are considering a career in dog grooming, you are entering an exciting and rewarding profession that can bring joy to both you and your furry clients! Dog grooming involves providing specialized services to keep dogs looking and feeling their best. It involves a wide range of skills and knowledge, so it is important to understand what is involved before taking the plunge. From understanding the basics of grooming to selecting the right tools and supplies, this guide will provide you with the information you need to start your career in dog grooming.


Dog grooming is an increasingly popular career path for those looking to pursue a career working with animals. As pet owners become more aware of the importance of proper grooming, the demand for experienced and knowledgeable dog groomers is growing. For those interested in a career in dog grooming, there are a number of steps to take to ensure success. In this article, we’ll provide an overview of how to start a career in dog grooming and the skills and qualifications necessary to succeed.

Education and Training

The first step in launching a successful career in dog grooming is to obtain the necessary education and training. For those with previous experience working with animals, enrolling in a formal dog grooming program may be an option. Dog grooming courses are typically offered at vocational schools or through private training programs. They often require a minimum of 100 hours of instruction and cover topics such as canine anatomy, breed-specific trimming techniques, and client relations.

For those without previous experience, obtaining a certificate or diploma in animal care or pet grooming may be a better option. These programs are designed to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the principles and practices of dog grooming. They usually involve both classroom instruction and hands-on training with live animals.

Gaining Experience

In addition to formal education, gaining experience is key to developing the skills necessary to succeed in the field of dog grooming. Many dog groomers choose to gain experience by working as an assistant to an experienced groomer. This allows them to observe and learn the proper techniques for bathing, clipping, and styling dogs. Working as an assistant can also provide valuable insight into the business side of the industry, such as client relations and marketing.

Many dog groomers also choose to volunteer at local animal shelters or pet stores. This type of experience can be invaluable, as it provides an opportunity to work with a variety of breeds and personalities. It can also give aspiring groomers the chance to observe and learn from experienced groomers.

Developing Your Business

Once you have the necessary education and experience, you can begin the process of launching your own dog grooming business. The first step is to create a business plan. This document should outline your goals and objectives, as well as your target market and marketing strategies. It should also include an assessment of the competition in your area, as well as an analysis of potential risks and opportunities.

The next step is to secure the necessary licenses and permits. These vary by state, but may include a business license, a pet groomer license, and a zoning permit. Once your business is legally registered, you can begin to market your services. This can include creating a website, setting up social media accounts, and developing printed materials.


Launching a career in dog grooming can be an exciting and rewarding endeavor. With the right education and training, as well as the necessary experience and business acumen, aspiring dog groomers can build successful and fulfilling careers.

### Common Myths About Starting a Career in Dog Grooming

1. Myth: You need to have a degree in veterinary science to become a dog groomer.

Fact: You don’t need a degree in veterinary science to become a dog groomer. Most groomers learn their trade through on-the-job training, apprenticeships, and/or attending a dog grooming school.

2. Myth: Dog grooming is an easy job.

Fact: Dog grooming is not an easy job. It requires patience, physical stamina, attention to detail, and a love of animals. It is also important to be knowledgeable of the various breeds and their specific grooming needs.

3. Myth: All dog groomers make the same amount of money.

Fact: Dog groomers have the potential to make a variety of salaries depending on their experience, location, and other factors. The average salary for a dog groomer is around $31,000 per year.

4. Myth: You need a lot of expensive equipment to become a dog groomer.

Fact: While it is true that you will need some specialized equipment to groom dogs, it does not need to be expensive. Many groomers will start out with basic items like a slicker brush, comb, scissors, and clippers. As their skillset and business grows, they can then invest in more specialized equipment.

Frequently Asked Questions

What qualifications do I need to become a dog groomer?

In order to become a professional dog groomer, you will need to complete a formal qualification such as a Level 2 Dog Grooming Diploma or a Higher National Certificate in Animal Care and Management. You can also take courses in canine first aid and health and safety.

How much experience do I need to become a dog groomer?

Most employers require at least one year of experience in dog grooming, so it is recommended that you volunteer or intern at a local grooming salon. This will give you the opportunity to gain hands-on experience and develop your skills before applying for a full-time position.


Dog grooming is a popular and growing career path. To succeed in this field, aspiring groomers need to obtain the right education and training, gain experience, and develop their own business. This might include enrolling in a formal dog grooming program, working as an assistant, volunteering at local animal shelters, and securing the necessary licenses and permits. Additionally they should create a business plan and market their services. With the right preparation and dedication, any aspiring dog groomer can launch a successful career.

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