Choosing a Pet Groomer

Practical and insightful tips for pet owners by Charlotte Reed

1) A groomer is an essential element for maintaining the comfort, health and beauty of your pet; she can be a great asset to your animal's welfare.

2) Pet grooming is not always a state-licensed vocation. Anyone can claim to be a groomer; therefore, it is important to get a referral. Check with neighbors who own pets, your vet and the Yellow Pages.

3) Check to be sure that a potential groomer has some certification from a grooming school or organization. In states that require licensure, ask for proof of the license.

4) Ask the groomer:

  • Where the groomer learned to style pets to breed standards;
  • About whether she belongs to a trade organization that promotes continuing education
  • If she is a member of the National Dog Groomers Association
  • How long she has been grooming pets

5) The pet grooming industry has exploded, providing a vast array of locations:

  • Grooming shops
  • Pet stores
  • Veterinarian's offices
  • Mobile vans
  • House calls

6) Choose the option that best serves your requirements -- convenience, medical attention, advanced styling, extra patience and handling

  • If your animal is over eight years old or has medical problems (such as a heart condition), try to find a veterinarian who offers grooming services.

7) To protect the health of your pet, make sure the groomer and grooming area are clean.

8) Be sure that the groomer carries liability insurance in the event that your pet is injured at the groomer's or on your premises.

9) Get a referral from the National Dog Groomers Association of America.

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