Dog grooming covers the hygienic care of a dog in addition to the enhancement of a dog’s appearance. It is one sector of the pet industry that can be relatively easy to get into. The average dog groomer salary can vary of course. However, with skill and professional care, one can turn it into a full time living.
At the time of writing this post, a grooming career didn’t have the same barrier of formal education qualifications that so many other professions have. However, taking a reputable dog grooming course is highly recommended.
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Disclaimer: Any reference to monetary figures should be read as estimates and not factual. All such references should be followed up by research to clarify.
So, if you love being around dogs and are considering dog grooming as a profession, then you will no doubt be curious as to what level of income you could expect. I frequently come across the question: How much do dog groomers make?
The typical dog groomer salary does of course depend on whether you plan to work in a salon or become a dog groomer running your own business.
Either way, this article can give you some benchmark figures to help with your decision.
An Average Dog Groomer Salary
When considering dog grooming jobs, the following tool is very useful to refer to because it lists the type of salary that PayScale’s research has recorded in different specialised areas.
You can find the hourly pay rate for a number of professions. But the one that we are interested in today is the average dog groomer salary. Just click on the graphic below to find your area. You can use the drop down option to toggle between hourly rates and yearly rates of income.
Variations in Dog Groomer Salary Figures
Dog groomers make different levels of income per year in each country. So it is difficult to discuss an average dog groomer salary. However, the tool included on this page does help to give you a comparative idea when looking at various career options.
The typical dog groomer salary also varies according to the state and the level of experience you have. The following figures are based on estimates and not to be taken as fact.
In the US, for example, the average salary of a dog groomer has often been in the range of $34,000 to $36,000 per year but as you can see from the tool above, this depends on how much experience the groomer has. It also depends on location. So there are many variables to take into consideration.
There are some states where dog groomers earn a higher or lesser amount of money. Some of them are Mississippi and Virgin Islands where dog groomers could, at the time of writing, earn more than in other states.
If you have 1-4 years experience, you can expect to earn a lower sum, typically anywhere between $12,919 – $35,759. But again this depends on where you work and the status of your employment or business. Groomers with 10+ years experience can earn considerably more per year.
According to PayScale, Dog groomers working in Australia could earn approximately AU$22 per hour, on average (at the time of writing this article). Again, this differs from state to state. You can typically expect to earn around AU$19 to AU$28 per hour, depending on your level of experience.
You can find updated salary figures from salary.com and payscale.com.
Dog Groomer Salary for Employee vs Employer
I’m not going to mention numbers here because the dog groomer salary differs considerably. It depends so much on the set up, the hours worked, the location, etc. etc.
If you are working as an employee in a salon, you could earn more money than a self-employed groomer because of the benefits you’ll enjoy. Some of those benefits are: health insurance, a flexible work schedule, and paid time off.
If you are running your own dog grooming business, you need to have good business skills to target the right market and to compete with other dog groomers in your locality. Of course, if you can establish yourself in an area that is not already serviced by other dog groomers, then all the better.
You should expect to earn much less in the early years of your business because there are expenses involved and you alone will bear any costs incurred. But as your business grows, you’ll definitely begin to earn more than groomers working for an employer.
And it goes without saying that the amount you earn will be determined by the dog grooming fees you charge.
Managing Your Own Dog Grooming Business
Listing the average dog groomer salary can be misleading if you are planning to work for yourself because it is the amount left after costs that is the relevant figure.
There are several costs involved in running your own dog grooming business and you need to be aware of them before you begin.
If you don’t have enough start-up capital, you could initially work from your home. You could then rent some space later when you can afford it or buy a van for mobile grooming. Again, it depends on your finances.
You many also invest in one of the popular dog grooming courses to make sure you acquire the necessary skills, both in grooming and in running a business.
You may have to pay for a special license if you’re running your business in a commercial location. If you want to increase your chances of attracting new clients, you would want to be certified as a dog groomer. There is normally a small fee when taking the tests.
Insurance is a definite necessity.
Tools and Equipment for Grooming
And then there are all of the required dog grooming tools and supplies. For example, you would need:
- Dryers or drying blasters
- Styling tools
- A vacuum for pet hair
- And the list goes on.
Shop for Dog Grooming Equipment (Affiliate Link)
You will need to advertise your business once you’ve finished setting it up. Dog owners need to know that there is a new groomer in the area.
These are some of the things you will need to spend money on if you want to start your own business.
The cost of everything mentioned here varies according to your country, area, and the store you purchase tools from.
To find out how much it will cost you to start and run a dog grooming business, make a budget plan and ask other groomers in your area for advice.
Typical Dog Grooming Charges
For small or mid-sized breeds without thick hair or breeds that do not require a complicated cut, groomers typically charge $30-$50. Groomers charge $50-$70 for large breeds without thick hair. For mid or large-sized breeds that have thick hair and require complicated cuts, the cost can be from $70-$90 and sometimes more for giant breeds.
Bath-only grooming for dogs with very short hair normally costs 50-75% of the amount for full grooming. At-home grooming also costs less then grooming in a salon, depending on travel involved.
Needless to say, relevant charges should be factored into the equation to get a more reliable estimate of an average dog groomer salary.
Additional Dog Grooming Charges
An extra amount is usually charged for any of the following:
- Hot oil treatment
- Use of flea-killing shampoo
- De-matting for long hair
- Removing skunk odor
- Hand-cutting instead of using clippers
- Brushing of dog’s teeth
- Expressing anal glands
Recapping Dog Groomer Salary Points
I hope you gained some valuable information from this article about the typical dog groomer salary.
If you are already operating as a dog groomer, please leave a comment to let us know where you are working, whether you are working for another groomer or for yourself and the level of dog grooming salary you have been able to enjoy so far. This kind of information will help others immeasurably. I look forward to your comments.
For additional information, when estimating dog groomers’ salaries, you might like to factor in the average dog groomer’s charges.
Here is one article, for example, that discusses costs of de-matting a dog: De-Matting Fees . Articles like this can give you an idea of typical charges. You can also check your local area for current charges to further refine your pet groomer salary estimates for your particular locality.
~ Guest Author ~