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Your dog might be due for a visit to the pet groomer if it’s gotten into the mud or rolled in something nasty recently. Sometimes, you might decide to treat your pup to a girl’s or boy’s day out for no reason other than to pamper your pet.
Once you’ve grown to appreciate how excellent grooming can be for your pet, you may decide to venture into the dog grooming business. Having your own dog grooming business will be great for your dog and pet owners that you know, but there are some essential things to keep in mind.
Read on to learn about some helpful hints on how to start a dog grooming business.
Is a Dog Grooming Business Right for You?
There are a couple of essential questions that you need to consider before getting into this business. Is this business a good career path for you? Will you enjoy being in this type of business?
Owning one or more dogs doesn’t mean that you are a great fit as a grooming shop owner. While being around dogs and making them look great is fun, there are other things to consider.
Ask yourself some crucial questions before you progress very far in the process:
- Am I willing to deal with the difficulties that come with business as well as the benefits?
- Are my family and friends supportive of me in my decision?
- Is grooming other peoples’ dogs something I could enjoy?
- Will this option be a suitable choice for me as a type of work?
- Is this option more likely to be a hobby or a stable career?
When you’re answering these questions, be bluntly honest with yourself. Regardless of whether you go forward, it will be essential to understand what you need to learn more about, irrespective of your grooming experience.
People who love dogs but don’t consider grooming a good fit may benefit more from starting a business for dog walking or training. These options are two examples of the many career paths available to people who love dogs.
What Do Dog Groomers Make on Average?
Your earnings are one of the most important things to consider before starting a new business venture of this type.
An average pet groomer salary is slightly over $35,000. Your area and the services that you offer for customers can make the rates vary.
Depending on the market and the amount of competition that your grooming business faces, you might decide to expand your services, such as adding show clips for popular breeds in your area. Sometimes tips are good, although the amounts owners are willing to tip vary from stingy to generous.
Despite the potential for a steady income with strong tip potential, the average earnings aren’t as high compared to many industries. When considering whether this sort of business is a good choice, the costs are another factor.
Will I Need Grooming Certifications or Other Training?
When you get into dog grooming, you might have some prior experience. However, certification or some other hands-on training may prove helpful.
Training and certifications can help you learn more and serve as a refresher. Another advantage is gaining many dog owners’ trust when they realize that you are certified.
Taking an online grooming certification can help you gain the necessary knowledge to start your business. If your schedule makes attending classes in person at a school difficult, online courses might be what you need to get a good start.
Most certification courses take a year to complete, which may not be ideal if you prefer to get started as soon as possible. When you are not willing to wait, you might want to look for a groomer who offers apprenticeships or find dog grooming training schools with semester-length certification courses.
Dog Grooming Business Pros and Cons
Looking at the positives and negatives is essential with any critical decision. We’ll look at the pros and cons to consider if you are thinking of opening a pet grooming business.
The Flexibility of Running a Business Yourself
Many people dream of being their own boss, and this type of business makes that possible. Advantages that self-employed dog owners enjoy include not dealing with controlling bosses and working with their chosen customers.
The Convenience of Setting Your Schedule
When you are a dog groomer, you can set the hours and work on your schedule. An advantage that comes with managing your schedule is making changes as needed.
Working With Lots of Dogs, of All Types
The more you love dogs, the more working with them will be a dream job. With many preferring the company of dogs to people, the grooming business may be a perfect choice.
Spending a Lot of Time Standing and Lifting
Few things beat spending all day with dogs. However, you’ll spend a lot of time standing, as well as lifting dogs that might wiggle a lot.
Your back and legs will feel the effects of standing so much, making quality sneakers and a back brace good ideas. Lifting dogs can also take a toll unless you have someone who can help you with the lifting.
You’ll Need to Work Weekends for Everything to Pay Off
One area where you may not have flexibility in scheduling is working on weekends. Although you could theoretically take weekends off, your customers might not like this idea.
In the service business, convenience is one of the things that matters the most. A good, successful grooming shop should at least have Saturday hours.
Many working dog owners have schedules that only allow grooming appointments on weekends. If you make yourself accessible, you’ll have satisfied customers ready to come back.
You May Work With Breeds With Complex Needs
Some breeds, like Yorkies, have coats more challenging to groom than others. You should definitely know how to brush different coats.
Others have behavioral quirks that are challenging for groomers, like the Chinese Crested, which tends to “scream” without reason.
Working with a variety of breeds during training will give you a well-rounded experience. If nothing else, you can advertise yourself as being a pro with challenging breeds .
Planning a Dog Groomer Business
Planning will benefit you when you undertake any task. A pet grooming business is no exception, and you will want to spend sufficient time planning before you start.
When you are in the early planning stages, here are some things to think about:
- What will your initial upfront costs be?
- Do you have monthly expenses that you need to pay right away?
- Who makes up most of the market in your area?
- What will you call your company?
These are some big questions to consider, but we will look at each of them individually to better understand how to plan each.
Dog Grooming Business Start-Up Cost
A significant amount of money will be necessary, regardless of whether you offer mobile dog grooming services or plan to work in a shop setting.
The size of the building and your location will make a difference, but many such commercial sites average between at least $75,000 and $100,000. Business and property taxes are recurring yearly expenses that you will need to keep in mind.
Rent prices for commercial buildings are usually at least $1,000 to $2,000 a month, with some property owners reducing the rent in exchange for a percentage in sales revenue. If you own property, running the business from your home might be an option to consider.
Grooming tables are a significant expense because you will likely need more than one. Bathing tubes, hoses, and shower attachments are also another considerable expense, along with fur dryers.
Brushes and combs, de-matters, clippers, and gloves are important tools of the trade. Nail clippers and the best dog nail grinder in the market help ensure greater success.
Shampoos and conditioners for different coat types are crucial to success. You may even enjoy success selling these products as add-ons.
Some may opt to start a mobile grooming business, which will require a suitable van. Regardless of the option you choose, you will also want to keep liability insurance costs in mind.
Publicizing Your Dog Grooming Brand
When selecting a name, you want the name to be memorable but relevant, so people don’t have to guess what you do. It would be best to consider which keywords will draw attention to your business, such as wash, pup, suds, or bubbles.
Choosing a perfect logo can be just as crucial to your success as picking the correct name. There are excellent graphic design programs that you can use to design a logo; however, if you prefer to have someone else prepare your logo, many freelancers create logos at a reasonable cost.
Sometimes logos attract customer attention in ways that other materials cannot. If your logo has a particularly clever design, you might build a following based on that design.
Giveaway items may be a handy way to increase your brand awareness. Dog bandanas, toys, or clickers with your company name or logo might help customers remember your services more efficiently.
Starting a Social Media Presence
Getting the word out before you launch is an excellent way to have a ready-made customer base. Social media is one of the best ways to build your base, with business Facebook and Instagram pages being unique ways to gain exposure.
Social media pages give customers who use these platforms a convenient way to get in touch with you. You can showcase photos of the clips you have done and purchase ads to boost your posts’ reach.
Having a website is also essential, as it allows interaction with customers who are not on social media. Your services offered, hours and location are the most crucial pieces of information you need to feature.
Legal Formation for Your Dog Grooming Business
The business structure is one of the most important aspects of starting a business that you need to consider. Many business owners opt to file as an LLC because of reduced liability.
Your dog business can benefit from existing as an LLC because you can raise funds a lot more easily. Another advantage that LLCs offer is in the form of tax breaks that you can take for your equipment.
A business set up as an LLC makes it easier to start other ventures under the same company name. For example, some groomers decide to branch into dog boarding, walking, or daycare in addition to grooming.
Banking for Your Grooming Business
Keeping personal and business finances separate will help put you on a path to success. Keeping track of your money on a day-to-day basis is more manageable, and you’ll also find tax time a lot less stressful.
Banks that specialize in small businesses are often the best choices for such ventures. Many of these banks are online and provide a better range of tracking features.
Separate business accounts make tracking profits and losses easier for you. Access to the funds that you need when you have to pay bills is also easier.
1. How much does it cost to start a dog grooming business?
You’ll want to plan to spend around $50,000 at a minimum to start a business on giving pet grooming service, although you should plan to spend more if you require employees.
2. How profitable is a dog grooming business?
A dog grooming business can be very profitable, with many making as much as $100,000 a year with a large client base and great advertising.
3. How do I start a dog grooming business from home?
Some research into whether local zoning laws will help you decide whether working from home is a viable option, then you will set up your business as you would if doing so off-site.
4. What qualifications do I need to open a dog grooming business?
At a minimum, you should have hands-on experience with dog grooming, but certification will help you stand out to prospective customers.
Even though starting a business is quite an adventure, doing what you love makes the process much easier. There is a lot for you to consider, but you will reap the rewards if you stay focused.