Pet groomers promote hygiene and overall health of pets like dogs and cats. Anyone with love and passion for animals can become a pet groomer. This is an excellent career option if you have extreme patience in handling feisty animals. Though pet grooming is an unregulated industry and does not require specialized education and certification, thorough training and experience are mandatory. Know how to become a pet groomer.
Pet groomers can work in pet megastores, pet grooming salons or vet clinics or even prefer to become a mobile pet groomer. Before you could decide to take up a career as a pet groomer, there are many aspects associated with being one. This article will educate you on the pet groomer classes, job outlook, steps to become a pet groomer and much more.
Pet Groomer Job Description
Pet groomers are skilled in several ways of enhancing a pet’s overall health and appearance. The most popular services include cutting, clipping and styling a pet’s coat. Bathing is included in the process along with clipping a pet’s nails.
Every dog is different and so the pet groomer needs to identify each specific breed so that they can apply appropriate hygienic care. They are more likely to work with uncooperative animals and must be willing to muzzle pets if need be. Pet owners should be updated on the latest animal trends and the craze among the pet owners so that they can replicate the same on their pets.
How to Become a Pet Groomer in Steps
Step 1: Do a basic study
Pet groomer is a rewarding career for those who love animals. However, pet groomer jobs are physically demanding and stressful not to mention the risk of being bitten by pets that don’t like to be groomed. For these reasons, you should make sure if this is the right job for you before going down this road. Researching the job role of pet groomers and learning about grooming techniques and how to replicate different styles of grooming for different breeds is important. You can also get an apprenticeship with an experienced pet groomer and observe their grooming techniques as part of your training.
Step 2: Complete a course in Pet Grooming
There is no license or degree in the pet grooming industry. But you must develop some credibility and experience with a professional. There are several online courses to help you with it. Research for online pet grooming classes or classes near your area where you can get in-person training. You can also enroll in pet groomer schools.
Step 3: Obtain Entry-Level Work Experience
Pet grooming demands hands-on training. Experience is the best teacher in this field. Interested candidates can volunteer at vet clinics, pet grooming salons, etc. You can also connect with the pet groomers in their area and assist them in pet grooming. Observe the techniques from experienced pet groomers. Initially, you may get paid very little or nothing at all, but if they are impressed with your skills you will find your future employer.
Step 4: Obtain Certification
Though official certification is not necessary, it will certainly help you in your career. For instance, consider obtaining a certificate from the National Dog Groomers Association of America for becoming a dog groomer. The course work requires you to participate in workshops and pass written exams. You will then have to demonstrate your pet grooming skills on different types of dogs.
Step 5: Get a Job
Try to get a job in megastores, vet clinics, and pet grooming salons. You can also think about starting your own business. Prepare a sound business plan, get a license, arrange start-up capital, and pay for supplies and the workplace for setting up a salon. Or you can become a mobile pet groomer and go to clients’ place in your specially outfitted vans to provide services to their pets.
[Also Read: A Career as a Pet Trainer and How to Become]
Pet Groomer Classes & Certifications
Pet grooming training is available from private grooming businesses, professional organizations and state-licensed pet grooming schools. Training is usually a diploma program that takes 2 – 18 weeks to complete. There are single courses that can be completed in 24 hours as well.
Pet groomer schools and organizations like the American Academy of Pet Grooming, Nash Academy of Animal Arts, Central College of Animal Studies, Cape Fear Community College, etc offer various pet grooming classes and courses. The pet grooming classes are a combination of classroom study and hands-on experience at any of the on-site grooming salons. If you are interested to start your own business then professional groomer training can offer you an expanded curriculum.
Pet Groomer Salary
The pay scale for pet groomers across the United States varies depending on the location and experience. (1)The lowest annual wage is $20,000 in some states while it is $40,000 per annum in other states. According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national average pet groomer salary is $23,630 per year. The demand for pet groomers is expanding every year in the U.S and the job growth rate is projected to be 22% in 2016-2026.
Should you Become a Pet Groomer?
Taking up a career as a pet groomer can be the right choice any animal lover can make. If you have the physical abilities, calm demeanor, passion to tend to “man’s best friend” this career is right for you. You can work in pet salons & spas, vet clinics, or become a mobile pet groomer. These days many pet day spas are popping up throughout the U.S which clearly shows that pet grooming businesses have become a part of American culture and there is no slow down anytime soon.