What are the pros and cons of becoming a dog groomer?
If you’re interested in a legitimate career in this field, then this is a question that’s likely crossed your mind. After all, you should NEVER pursue any job path without first having a clear idea of what to expect.
Luckily, we’re here to help!
Read on as we break down the perks and downsides of a career in professional dog grooming, so you can determine once and for all if this is the right endeavor for YOU!
Benefits of Becoming a Dog Groomer
Let’s start with the PROS of becoming a dog groomer. So long as you love working with animals, this is going to be a career path that brings you a lot of fulfillment and joy. However, there are all sorts of other perks you’ll get to benefit from, too.
Here are just a handful of the best examples…
Pro #1: You Get to Work with Dogs EVERY Day!
Who isn’t a hard-core dog lover?
If being surrounded by dogs sounds like a dream come true, it’s because it is. After all, dogs are downright awesome. They love the world and are NEVER boring! As such, your work days will be filled with all sorts of affection, fun, and excitement.
Getting to work with dogs day in and day out means you get to know their personalities and quirks. Moreover, you’ll learn more about canine body language and communication styles. At the end of each day, you’ll go home in a good mood.
Sure, dogs have their share of challenging qualities, too. There will be some grooms that don’t go as smoothly as others – just as there’ll be some pooches who aren’t the most loving or friendly. But to an avid dog lover such as yourself, that’s not a deterrent. No matter the dog or their temperament, you’ll be driven by the passion of giving them the best and most positive grooming experience ever!
Pro #2: You’ll Get Plenty of Good Exercise!
One definite pro of becoming a dog groomer is that you’ll rarely ever be stagnant on the job. Thus, if the regular white-collar office job sounds insanely boring to you, you’re in luck!
Being a dog groomer is one of those careers that will have you up and moving all day long. This means no sitting at a computer for 8-10 hours a day. (Unless you’re running your own business – but even then, it’ll be minimal when compared to the amount of time you spend actually grooming.)
Plus, you’ll constantly get to work with your hands. This is why, if there’s one thing we can guarantee about a dog grooming career, it’s that it’s NEVER boring!
Pro #3: You Can Run Your Very Own Business!
Many groomers start by working independently as freelancers. From there, they eventually open their own professional grooming salon, provide direct-to-client mobile services, or set up shop right from the comfort of home. What we’re trying to say here is: this is the type of career path that will give you ENDLESS creative freedom and job opportunities.
Furthermore, running your own business can be an awesome career move! You’ll have the unique flexibility of setting your hours, dictating the practices your staff follows, and reaping all the benefits granted to you as a full-time business owner.
What could be better?
Pro #4: You’ll Never Run Out of Things to Learn!
Dog grooming is an industry that’s forever evolving and changing. Thus, if you’re someone who loves keeping up with new trends and techniques, this can be the perfect career path for you!
There are always new skills to master and new styles to inspire you. Plus, you can also attend amazing grooming conferences and summits, where likeminded professionals share their knowledge to enrich your career.
And don’t forget about professional training, too! There are all sorts of workshops and certification courses (both online and in-person) to further enrich your subject-matter expertise, and take your skill-set to the next level!
Did you know that QC Pet Studies offers both a Dog Grooming certification course AND a Dog Training certification course? Learn more about these wildly popular programs here!
Pro #5: There Will ALWAYS Be a Demand for Dog Groomers!
In order for you to justify supplying any type of service, you need to be confident that there will always be a demand. The good news is, when it comes to professional dog grooming, there will never be a shortage of potential clients!
Let’s put this into perspective…
According to the 2021-2022 National Pet Owners Survey, conducted by APPA (The American Pet Products Association), “[70%] of U.S. households, or about 90.5 million families, own a pet.” This is a whopping 56% increase when compared to how many families owned a pet back in 1988. Plus, this is only considered the United States (and not every other country in the world as well)!
Back in 2019, PR Newswire reported that only approximately 37% of dog owners regularly take their furry family members to a professional groomer. But even then, 37% of 90.5 million still amounts to 33,485,000 people in need of your grooming services in the U.S. alone!
Negatives of Becoming a Dog Groomer
Okay, let’s move onto the cons now. It’s important to keep in mind that what might be considered a “con” to one person might not necessarily be a con to another. It really just depends on personal preferences, work ethic, job expectations, etc.
Con #1: Being a Dog Groomer is Physically Demanding.
There’s no escaping that dog grooming is a very physically challenging career. As you recall, one of the perks we discussed earlier was the physical exercise you’ll get from being on your feet all day. However, the fact that you WILL be on your feet all day – for many hours at a time – can also get a little exhausting.
After all, you’ll be maneuvering in all sorts of unnatural ways. You’ll often need to lift and/or position heavy things (ahem, and heavy dogs), and your shifts can range anywhere from 4 to 8+ hours. That much time on your feet can make for some pretty annoying aches by the end of your workday.
If you’re someone who struggles with physical impairments, or you’re not in the best of shape, that makes grooming a pretty inexpedient career. As a result, becoming a dog groomer might not be the best – or the most enjoyable – job path for you to pursue.
Con #2: Not All Dogs Are Easy to Work With.
Let’s be real: not every dog you work with is going to want cuddles and kisses. On the contrary, some dogs (especially when in a stressful environment, such as a grooming salon) can behave unpredictably. They can be loud, obnoxious, and even aggressive.
Because of this, if you’re not careful and don’t have proper training, working as a dog groomer can lead to the odd injury, such as getting bitten or scratched.
This is just one of the many reasons why professional certification training is crucial to your success! After all, you’ll need to learn to be particularly mindful of how you handle and interact with your clients’ dogs. Though some people would still much rather work with rowdy dogs than with people, the reality is, this job isn’t going to be for everyone.
Never fear – QC Pet Studies is here to teach you EVERYTHING you need to know in order to safely work with every type of dog and temperament! Check out our internationally-recognized Dog Grooming Course to learn more!
Con #3: You Might Not Be Interested in Running Your Own Business.
Not everyone is cut out to be a business-owner… But that’s okay. There are a lot of “unknowns” that come with running a business, including the most obvious one: What happens if your business doesn’t make money?
That can be an extremely stressful undertaking if you’re not in a good financial position, or if you just don’t like the idea of that much stress. So, does this mean you shouldn’t become a dog groomer?
The reality is, you can still have a majorly successful grooming career by working at established salons (as opposed to launching your own). The key here is to simply be honest with yourself. What is your work ethic like? Of the two career paths, which one interests you most?
There’s NO wrong answer to this question! However, being honest with yourself when answering it will increase your chances of long-term happiness and success in this industry.
Con #4: There Will Always Be More to Learn.
“But wait,” you might be saying, “wasn’t this one of the benefits listed earlier?”
Yep! And again, this all boils down to perspective.
As with most careers in ever-changing industries, being a professional dog groomer means that you’ll never fully put the books down. This means that the need to learn won’t stop once you’ve received your dog grooming certification. Rather, you’ll be expected (and even sometimes required) to continue your professional training by taking additional courses, seminars, conferences, lectures, etc. until the day you eventually retire.
While some people thrive in this setting, others cringe at the idea of “always learning”. If you’re truly passionate about this career path, then the prospect of ongoing education and forever expanding your skill-set will be an enticing one. However, if you’re thinking of becoming a groomer simply for the paycheck, this prospect might feel more like a hassle than anything else.
Why do YOU want to become a professional dog groomer? What is it about this job path that excites you most?
Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!