August 26, 2020 Last updated April 20th, 2021 908 Reads share

Pet Talk: How to Start a Pet Grooming Business

Image Credit: DepositPhotos

Many pet owners usually do not have the knowhow or are not passionate about grooming their pets, so they look for experts to do so. That creates a perfect business opportunity for you if you are passionate about pet grooming. You can do it on a part-time or full-time basis. Plus you don’t need to attend a pet grooming academy to groom pets, all you need is experience, work ethic, and passion.

Starting a Pet Grooming Business

Starting a pet grooming business requires you to go all the way in learning how the industry works. Know the market and find out about your potential customers. For instance, while dogs are very potential customers do not overlook the cats because they often groom themselves. Remember you are in business and you need to make the most out of it.

The Business Model

You can choose to groom your client’s pets fully, or yours can be a partial business. Entirely grooming means that the clients leave the pets with you, you groom them up, and they pick them later. Or you can provide self-service grooming services where pet owners wash them up at your place; then you finalize the grooming job. In short, you leave all the dirty work to them. Check the pros and cons of each model.

Make a Business Plan

Planning is most vital to every business. Identify the kind of business you want to run, your target market, and your budget. In addition to that, identify how you will be running marketing and promotion. With every business, you have to market it.

Also, plan on how to handle the taxes, staffing, and payroll. As much as you would want to do the business as part-time or for passion, it would be best if you had a perfect business plan.

Find Out About Potential Profits

While a typical pet groomer makes $30,000 per year, what does that mean for your business? For instance, if you can handle 20 animals per day with each bringing in $50 that translates to $100,000 daily. How about with more staffing?

Do the math and find out how you are going to make money out of business. Be thoughtful about the marketing costs and how you are going to leverage your marketing strategies for the benefit of your business.

Calculate your annual revenue and understand your service limit, cost, and the market.

Set a Budget

Now you need to set a budget for your business and stick to it. Decide if you want to invest in a commercial pet grooming service, mobile, or even backyard grooming. With the latter, you also need to have in mind that the business will grow and you will need a bigger space eventually so plan for it.

Budget for the shop rent, business permits, staffing, employee training, equipment, taxes, marketing, and promotion.

Define Your Scope of Work

Decide on what services to offer with pet grooming such as full wash/ grooming, puppy cuts, nail clipping, fur trimming, moisturizing, final brush and fluff, pest shampooing, teeth maintenance, skunking, pet massage, pawdicure among many other pet grooming services. Make a list of the services you will offer together with the pricing.

Find a Location

Find the perfect location to set up the business by looking at the rental cost, target market, traffic, and visibility. A site can grow or flop your business so ensure you identify your market before you settle.

Find Suppliers

You will need supplies such as nail clippers, tubs, shears, dryers, treats, shampoo, towels, etc. Compare suppliers to find the best cost and do not compromise on quality.

Market Your Business

Promote your business by involving yourself in the community through your pet grooming services. You can attend a dog vet and dog care services to enhance your relationship with pet owners and the pets too. Advertise on social media and find the best marketing strategy to bring in more clients.

Have a Staffing Plan

You need employees to help with the pet grooming business. Don’t understaff and or overstaff. Find a balance to minimize your operating costs.

You can hire veterinary students who have an interest in the business to top up permanent employees. Find animal lovers who have a passion for the work.

Have Style

Create a business logo for your business. have a unique style and set up a comfortable waiting bay with maybe a tv set. Also, include incentives like small accessories for the pets and pet owners after the groom.

Make an Accounting Plan

You can adopt an accounting software to track revenue, payrolls, taxes, rent, supplies, audits, etc.

Join the Pet Grooming Community

If there is an association of pet groomers in the community, you should join for more exposure and referrals. Interact and attend pet trade shows.


If it’s possible, volunteer at a pet grooming service, ask questions, and learn everything, including all the dirty work. The more involved you get into the pet grooming business, the more experience you get in terms of pet grooming, staffing, payrolls, and equipment.


Follow those guidelines and see your pet grooming business come into fruition.

DepositPhotos – pet groomer

Colleen Fogarty

Colleen Fogarty

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