How to become a dog groomer

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how to become a pet groomer

This blog post ‘How to become a dog groomer’ is for anyone who may be interested in becoming a dog groomer. Anyone can become a dog groomer if they really want to. You can become anything you want to become, you just need to want to do it or else it won’t ever happen. Grooming dogs is hard physical work there is no doubt about it. If you are looking at a quick way to earn money through dog grooming. Yes you can earn good money grooming dogs. But it is not a get rich quick scheme it takes time to build up your dog grooming clients. You will also need some money to get started if you are wanting to work for yourself.

Step 1. Learn how to groom a dog

You do not need to be qualified to be able to run a dog grooming business. And you do not need be qualified to be able to groom dogs in the UK and charge clients for your services. You will find plenty of heated debates on this one.
There are lots of qualified and unqualified groomers who can groom dogs very well. Then there are plenty of both types, qualified and unqualified groomers who have no idea how to groom a dog and never will. I will leave it at that.

Do you need a licence to groom dogs?

If you don’t know how to groom a dog this doesn’t give you a licence to set up and groom dogs with no knowledge. Although in the UK you don’t need a licence either to set up a dog grooming business. The first step to become a dog groomer is to learn, go on a course and get practical experience. A good starting point is to learn angulation, conformation and balance within a dog >> 

Step 2. Gain dog grooming experience

To gain experience working as a dog grooming try getting a position in dog grooming salon or kennels as an employee. This is the cheapest option if you want to become a dog groomer. Tools are usually provided for you where you work. You may even get sent off on a dog grooming course or learn as you work. 
But don’t expect to be trimming, clipping or styling dogs to start with this way. Your job will be bathing and drying dogs, sweeping the floor and answering the phone to take bookings to start with.


If you want to take anything from this post about dog grooming here it is.
Understand what angulation, conformation and balance is within a dog. Learn how to use a set of dog clippers and a pair scissors. You will become a very good dog groomer and will be able to transform any coated breed of dog. (As long as the dog is not matted up.) That is all there is to becoming a dog groomer. Start by reading the Kennel Breed Standards book  If you have ‘an eye for a dog’ you will do well as a dog groomer.

If you don’t know what the Kennel Club Breed Standards book is about I will briefly explain. 
The Kennel Club has what they call a breed standard for each breed of pedigree dog.
Ideally every pedigree dog should meet their breed standard.

This book has every single breed of pedigree dog’s breed standard and a photo of the breed of dog in this book. 

Each photo of the dog in the KC Breed Standards book should be one of the best examples of their breed.
Following the rules set out in their breed standard which includes the angulation, conformation and balance of that breed.

This is a handy book to have in your grooming salon for if you don’t know what a particular breed of dog looks like.

Step 3. Set up your own dog grooming business

Once you have trained to become a dog groomer you may want to set up your own dog grooming business. This makes sense. Why work as a dog groomer for someone else when you can be your own boss. Set your own hours and your own price. 

Step 4. Choose a location

Choose a location for your dog grooming business.
A few choices here you can either set up a dog grooming business from home. Rent or buy a dog grooming salon. Or have a go at mobile dog grooming. 

Grooming dogs from home UK

This works well for a lot of dog groomers working on their own part or full time. 
You will have to check with your local council regarding planning permission and business rates. 
The advantage of this would be that you can save on rent of a salon. Diesel petrol expenses etc.
The main disadvantage of running  a dog grooming business from home would be the noise.
Hope that you have good neighbours who are not going to complain. 

Rent a dog grooming salon

Renting a dog grooming salon is an option, ok you will have overheads to pay for.
You may also find it hard for someone to allow to you rent a shop for use as a dog grooming salon.
The advantages of renting a salon is that you can shut the door and leave when you have finished and forget about it. 
The disadvantages of a renting a dog grooming salon down the road. This is the classic ‘waiting for clients to collect their dogs’ so you can leave after the day.

Mobile dog grooming

By mobile dog grooming you will not have to wait for clients to collect dogs that is a fact. You will have to find a suitable vehicle, van or trailer to kit out.
A lot of mobile groomers will use the clients electric to groom the dogs. So that is one advantage. 
The disadvantage would be the running costs of the vehicle. 

Step 5. Buy professional dog grooming equipment

You are going to need some professional dog grooming equipment to start off your own dog grooming business.
Here is a list of dog grooming equipment to get you started. 

Step 6. Start marketing your dog grooming business

You can easily start marketing your own dog grooming business.
As soon as you have decided that you are going to set up a dog grooming business. Get a website, a Facebook page and a Google my business listing set up. It doesn’t matter if you don’t open for another 2 weeks or a month get these started. 

Step 7. Build a dog groomers website

You really don’t need to spend thousands on website design for dog groomers. 
Easily create your own website take a look here at the options >

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