How to Choose a Groomer for Your Dog
Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith

Depending on the breed of dog you have, a groomer may be very useful in keeping the hair coat neat and tidy. Ask your veterinarian, family, and friends for names of groomers that they recommend.


Questions to ask when choosing a groomer...

Staff and training:

  • What breeds do they own?
  • Professional groomer with a well-groomed English setterAre their pets' hair coats kept neat and clean?
  • Did the groomer go to school to learn grooming or did they learn it 'on the job?'
  • How long have they been grooming dogs?
  • What breeds are they proficient at grooming?
  • Do they provide different styles of cuts for different breeds?
  • Will they give a 'show cut' versus a 'puppy cut?'

Hours, fees, and payment:

  • What are the hours?
  • How are dogs admitted and how do you know when to pick them up?
  • How long does it take to get an appointment?
  • What is the range of fees for your breed of dog?
  • What does that fee include?
  • What methods of payment are accepted?
  • When is payment due?
  • Are credit cards accepted?

Services:

  • What type of shampoos and conditioners are used?
  • If your veterinarian recommends a certain shampoo do you need to supply it?
  • Is a hand-held or cage drier used?
  • Is the ear hair plucked from those breeds with hair in the ear canals?
  • Do they accept dogs that need to be sedated for grooming?
  • Who sedates and monitors your dog?
  • Will the groomer trim nails between regular grooming appointments?

Facilities:

  • Is the area kept clean, neat, and orderly?
  • Are there unpleasant odors?
  • Where are the dogs kept?
  • How are clippers, scissors, etc., cleaned between use?

Your relationship with your dog's groomer is similar to the one with your own hairdresser or barber. They should listen to what you want and you should listen to their advice before making your decision.

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Reprinted from PetEducation.com.