I often ask our grooming school applicants why they’re interested in dog grooming. The majority of them answer that they want to be a groomer because they love dogs. Without a doubt, the love and care for dogs is a minimum requirement to be a groomer. However, if you want to be a professional dog groomer you need to love dogs and you need something else. Do you know what that something might be?
The Groomer vs. The Pet Owner
Various skills, technique, knowledge, and experience are required to be a professional dog groomer. Basic grooming for the regular pet owner is different from what we do as groomers. Pet owners will avoid doing anything to make their pet feel uncomfortable. Hence why they hate brushing their dogs! Dog groomers do their best to keep the dog comfortable and relaxed but it's unrealistic to expect all your grooming dogs to be angels.
In a professional setting, groomers take charge. It is up to the groomer how the pet is going to get through the groom. Most dogs handle grooming very well, especially if they've been introduced to it from an early age. Some dogs can be nervous but all it usually takes is some time, patience, and love. It is the job of a groomer to see what options there are to clean the pet and make the pet and their owners feel good about it.
Not All Dogs Are The Same
From time to time we’ll meet dogs who just love coming to the salon and don’t want to leave even when their owners come to pick them up. But the reality is, not all dogs act this way. Grooming can be scary and stressful for some pets and their owners too. But it doesn't have to be!
We have dogs of all different temperaments come into the salon every day. You may get some dirty dogs, severely matted dogs, senior dogs with arthritic pain, blind dogs that are scared of everything, puppies that just want to play, and hinder your ability to groom. You still have to do your best to make them beautiful. It’s not easy work that anyone can do but it can be done with expertise, proficiency, and patience.
Believe In Your Powers
Whenever I feel discouraged or lose motivation in my work, I remember my power to transform dirty or unkept dogs and make them look and feel better. It’s truly rewarding to see a dog come in with terrible mats or dirty feet, then watch them transform into a completely different dog. The reactions I get from clients when they pick up their dog is priceless! When you start your dog grooming journey I highly recommend taking before and after photos of every dog you get to work on. The expressions you see on the dogs before and after their groom is astonishing. Once you become a professional dog groomer I’m sure you will experience the same pride in your work.
Dog grooming is one of the most rewarding jobs right now. It's not just a form of art and styling, but it's mostly about pet wellness. Dogs give us so much joy and happiness, so what another way to "give back" than to make them feel joy and happiness all while making a career out of it.