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Thread: Dog groomers

  1. No longer seeing where it goes, I'm in the driver's seat.
    AmandaA's Avatar
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    #1

    Dog groomers

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    So my current job will eliminated on September 1. I work has a kennel staffer right now, my boss is going to be closing the boarding and expanding grooming. She asked if grooming was something I'd be interested in and it is something I have thought about in the past. I have been looking at training options and the 2 that I have found are:

    1, Animal Arts Academy which is the biggest most well known grooming school in the MidWest, but it's 6k+ equipment. They don't have much in the way of financial assistance but I could do a payment plan, and once it paid up I could start there. They would also likely be able to get me a job right out of school if I chose not to go back to my employer.

    2. Go to the Petco here in town to be a groomer apprentice there and learn from them while getting paid. My biggest hang ups there are that I'm worried the training won't transfer well out of Petco, that the training won't be that great and last that I won't get paid much.

    Do any of you know how well that would transfer to another grooming place? Also any other advice would be great!
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    #2
    I would go with the grooming school. Sounds like it will be more transferrable.

    Edit- I also wanted to out that I used to show dogs, and I know a fair amount of people that opened their own groom shop or worked in grooming with they skills they learned from grooming show dogs. I think experience is just as important as training, but the experience should be varied.
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    #3
    What does your boss say about the two options? I think the school is probably more transferable, but if you only intend to as a groomer at Petco or similar then option #2 is probably sufficient. My aunt shows dogs and she definitely does not take her dogs to Petco to groomed, so I would pick the best experience based on what you see yourself doing longer term.
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    #4
    I started as a groomer at Petsmart and I'm still there so I haven't gone anywhere else but I know people that have and it's been fine. Certain places will want to retrain you because they do things their own way and us corporate groomers have rules on what we can do like "only a 10 blade on the pads" which other groomers don't have but I know at least 5 that have moved on to private shops from PetSmart and petco



    As far as training I mean they don't teach us crazy show cuts but we do learn the basic breed cuts. And the pay is great. I think it averages between private and corporate because we charge more at PetSmart than private but they do more dogs a day at the private ones. On my good weeks I can make $1000 before taxes, bad weeks I make $500. I like the idea of not having all the rules and stuff with working for technically a retail company but at the moment the paid vacation, hourly pay that I make if we're slow and healthcare outweighs it for me.
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    #5
    Are you actually interested in dog grooming as a career or did you only start really considering it as an option when your boss mentioned it? I mean I've thought about a lot of things in the past, some were serious some were not. $6k+ is A LOT to throw down and/or make payments on what is essentially a whim. If you've given it serious thought in the past, why did you decide against it then?
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Heisenberg View Post
    Are you actually interested in dog grooming as a career or did you only start really considering it as an option when your boss mentioned it? I mean I've thought about a lot of things in the past, some were serious some were not. $6k+ is A LOT to throw down and/or make payments on what is essentially a whim. If you've given it serious thought in the past, why did you decide against it then?
    It's been something I was interested in for a while, but back then it was the money as well. I wasn't in a better spot then financially than I am now. However since moving to this town I've been increasingly frustrated with the jobs I've had available to me due to my lack of skills. I have bounced around the ideas of grooming or training off and on for years. I'm just the type of person who has a hard time making those big financial choices without some big push. I have been saying for awhile to DB that I needed to either go to school and get a degree or I needed to go to a trade school.

    To address some of the other questions, my current boss has said that either would be acceptable however she realizes that with either one I won't be ready to work for her for a while. From things she has said and her body language I think part of it for her is that I JUST got hired on in June, and now here she is changing things and if I don't do grooming I don't have a job with her.

    Thanks for the advice everyone.
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    I would take the apprenticeship job.

    People would generally rather hire people with experience rather than just out of school.
    One question though, would you need to eventually get licensed? For example, something like a cosmetology license to cut people's hair or do nails?

    We have a groomer come to our house once a month to do the 5 dogs, and clip the nails and trim the lady parts of many of the 9 cats. We did not hire her becausecond of her degree (no clue whether she has one) or her "resume."
    We hired her because the first time she came, the dogs were comfortable around her, and she showed us that not only was she good at what she did, the animals all stayed calm around her when she was doing it.
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    #8
    Yeah I'd go the petsmart route for sure above paying that much for dog grooming school. At least see if you even like it, get paid for doing it, and then if you still want to go to school it'll always be there. That just feels like a really absurd amount of money to me and I can't imagine it paying off quickly enough to be worth it. I mean what is the market like where you are? How many cuts do you really need to know? Are you trying to groom show dogs or just pets?

    Also, is there any other kind of schooling you're interested in? Can't you get pell grants or something? I mean even I am eligible for pell grants and I have a college fund. I would at least exhaust that option before paying $6k+ to learn to cut dog hair.
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    #9
    Just an opinion from someone who uses groomers but knows nothing about them haha, I would go the PetSmart route.

    I literally have no idea what type of background our groomer has. I never even thought to ask. I just went off of online reviews and word of mouth!
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  10. No longer seeing where it goes, I'm in the driver's seat.
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Guynavywife View Post
    I would take the apprenticeship job.

    People would generally rather hire people with experience rather than just out of school.
    One question though, would you need to eventually get licensed? For example, something like a cosmetology license to cut people's hair or do nails?

    We have a groomer come to our house once a month to do the 5 dogs, and clip the nails and trim the lady parts of many of the 9 cats. We did not hire her becausecond of her degree (no clue whether she has one) or her "resume."
    We hired her because the first time she came, the dogs were comfortable around her, and she showed us that not only was she good at what she did, the animals all stayed calm around her when she was doing it.
    No licensing just most employers prefer you to have some form of training over being self taught.

    Quote Originally Posted by missinghim View Post
    Just an opinion from someone who uses groomers but knows nothing about them haha, I would go the PetSmart route.

    I literally have no idea what type of background our groomer has. I never even thought to ask. I just went off of online reviews and word of mouth!
    Thanks for the advice I'll keep it in mind! I know I talked to DB's mom who knows a little about it and she suggested building a portfolio so if I do leave Petco and want to go to a private shop I can show what I've done, not just have my resume.

    Quote Originally Posted by Heisenberg View Post
    Yeah I'd go the petsmart route for sure above paying that much for dog grooming school. At least see if you even like it, get paid for doing it, and then if you still want to go to school it'll always be there. That just feels like a really absurd amount of money to me and I can't imagine it paying off quickly enough to be worth it. I mean what is the market like where you are? How many cuts do you really need to know? Are you trying to groom show dogs or just pets?

    Also, is there any other kind of schooling you're interested in? Can't you get pell grants or something? I mean even I am eligible for pell grants and I have a college fund. I would at least exhaust that option before paying $6k+ to learn to cut dog hair.
    There is a demand in the area for groomers, most of the shops here have closed because the rent around here is just nuts. I know our phone is constantly ringing with people that are saying their place closed. I'd stick with pets for now, I honestly don't know much about dog shows.
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