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  • How to find a Quality Groomer

    2 posts, 2 voices, 1051 views, started Sep 17, 2008

    Posted on Wednesday, September 17, 2008 by Petstylist007


    • Amethyst

      Finding a Quality Groomer  

      Selecting a pet groomer is very important, as this industry has few regulations by which individuals enter and maintain their professional status as a pet groomer. Currently the State of Arizona has NO LICENSING available for pet groomers. Although pet groomers are viewed on the same lines as a professional cosmetologist, we are not given standards and practices laws like the hair dresser you visit. So you see, it is important to know what to look for when entrusting your best friend to a grooming shop or mobile groomer.  

      Pet groomers that are members of the Arizona Professional Pet Groomers Association must follow our strict code of ethics. This outlines a standards and practices for our members to follow. We also offer our members the opportunity to attend continuing education seminars, network with other conscientious groomers, and keep them abreast of new developments in the pet grooming field. Members of the A.P.P.G.A. are forward thinking individuals who care to offer the very best in pet grooming.  

      Currently the A.P.P.G.A. is working on a legislative bill that will ask the State of Arizona to require all pet groomers to be licensed. This will set forth a state wide standard for practices, which is needed desperately in our industry. Contact us if you would like to join the A.P.P.G.A. as an associate member to help support our goal of having pet groomers licensed at the state level.  

      What to look for when choosing a Groomer:  

      Sometimes you have to do your homework, when choosing whom you are going to let groom your pet. Because this industry is unregulated by any city or state agency, it is up to you to do a little detective work prior to dropping off your furry friend.  

      1. Ask to see the facilities, beyond the lobby. Look for cleanliness of the cages, floors and work areas. Of course there will be hair scattered about, but there shouldn't be dirty kennels, tubs and floors. If they will not let you see the facility then leave promptly. Someone with nothing to hide would give you a tour of their shop/mobile unit.  

      2. Ask what their policies are on handling your pet.  

      Do they use muzzles and restraints safely ? How do they handle puppies, seniors, and nervous or difficult pets. Where do they keep the pets while they are waiting to be groomed? Ask questions that you are able to see the answers to, such as the kennels, the bathing area, dogs currently being groomed, products used and stored, sanitized, etc.  

      3. What are their credentials:  

      Talk with the groomers and ask where they have been trained. Ask them to provide you with some client references. Ask to see a photo book of their work. Don't assume that all groomers are the same. You want to find someone who has experience, yet has a love for animals as well. Ask to see if they have any certificates from grooming seminars, schools, or classes that they have attended. Also find out if they belong to any grooming association either state or national.  

      4. Do they have style?  

      Find out if they have a specific breed that they specialize in. Are they familiar with the grooming needs of your breed. Are they interested in giving your pet a style and clip that is easy to maintain with your lifestyle. Not all dogs need to be shaved down. If their skills are limited to shave downs and they have no desire to create a stylish look for your pet, you may want to look else where.  

      5. Ask your friends , family or Vet to recommend a groomer.  

      Navigating the yellow pages for a groomer can be a daunting task. By asking people you know that have their pets groomed can save you a lot of time. However, don't just take someone's word for it. Follow the guidelines we have listed and it will help you find the groomer that will suit your needs, and make your pet look and feel great.  

      Groomer Q and A :  

      What does your groomer expect of you?  

      Your professional groomer expects you to be honest about your dogs temperment, health and previous grooming history. Your honesty will give the groomer a better understanding of how to handle your pet to the best of their ability. If you neglect to give truthful information it could be detrimental to your pet and the groomer.  

      Be aware, if your dogs coat is matted it could cost you additional charges ranging from 15.00 to 40.00 per hour, depending on the groomer and the severity of the matted coat. Some groomers may not even do a de-matt, they may just shave your dog (due to the pain of de-matting) and ask you to maintain a much more diligent grooming schedule.  

      Your groomer will expect you to have your dog picked up from the salon within a reasonable time. Be considerate, and don't leave your dog at the groomers all day long. Most groomers will give you a pick up time or call you when your pet is ready.  

      Tipping your groomer for a job well done is something you should do. The normal tipping scale is 15% of the total fee. If your groomer is an owner/operator you should still tip them for their hard work.  

      What you should expect from your groomer:  

      Not all groomers are created equal. Never assume anything.  

      Ask for your pet to be provided with clean fresh water while they are in the salon, or mobile unit.  

      If your pet is going to be in the salon for an extended period of time, ask what their policy is on walking your pet to let it relieve itself while it waits.  

      Grooming times vary from groomer to groomer and what they have scheduled. Ask how long it will take to groom your pet and ask for a pick up time.  

      Grooming fees vary between salon and mobile groomers. Ask how much your pet will cost to groom. Find out if there will be any other charges incurred prior to leaving your pet to be groomed. Let the groomer know that they have to ask permission to do additional services on your pet, such as flea dips, shave downs, etc. You shouldn't have to pay for additional services that you didn't agree to prior to leaving your pet.  

      Finally, you should be able to express what style of clip that you want your pet to receive. Let the groomer know your lifestyle and time constraints on keeping up with grooming at home. You should expect a clear and concise idea of what your pet will be groomed like.  

      You should expect to be able to speak with the groomer that will be working on your pet. You should expect to be treated with respect and your pet to be treated with dignity and compassion. Ask questions and be informed. Be an EDUCATED consumer!


        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Kelly McRaney wrote Sep 19, 2008
        • As a licensed cosmetologist, and the owner of a dog that is very high maintainence, I am suprised that there is no lisensure required for pet groomers.I’ve tried to groom my Lovey(pictured below),and boy is it much more difficult than grooming humans! I appreciate the info and now know what I need to look for when choosing a groomer. I have a 1 1/2 year old maltese who knows she is the Queen, and she loves to have her day of beauty!

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