Groomers: 10 steps to choose the best one

Dog-With-GroomerMany people think dropping off their dog at the groomer should be a straightforward event. What could possibly go wrong? Well you would be surprised. Dogs get hurt, lost and sometimes abused. You want to ensure that you’re leaving Fido in capable, caring hands. Just as if you were taking a child to day care! Take the time to do your due diligence and make sure you research any facility or person who acts as your pet’s potential groomer.

Below are some suggested steps to help choose the best groomer:

  1. Visit Facility: Watch how the dogs leave the facility. Are they wagging their tails? Do they seem terrified?
  2. Request a Tour: You want to be able to see every area of the facility to make sure it is clean. What is the temperature in the back kennel area? Are the dogs being monitored or just locked away in the back room? Also, you want to be able to see every area in the facility. You should not see any walls or closed doors. Everything should be in plain view. No secrets!
  3. Credentials: Is the provider a “master” groomer which means her skills have been evaluated against a national standard. According to WebMD, “a master groomer knows safety procedures, health and hygiene practices in the shop, how to handle pesticides, the anatomy of the dog, proper dog handling techniques, first aid. It’s so much more than just how to do a certain trim or cut.”
  4.  Stay for the Show: You should be able to watch the entire process. If you are not permitted to see the grooming process, your dog or others, then there is something fishy about that. If that occurs, it’s time to leave with your dog.
  5. Longevity: Ask how long they have been in business. If they are independent, ask how long they have been grooming. If they have staff, ask how long they have been with the company.
  6. Emergency Planning: What happens if Fido gets hurt or becomes ill while under their care. What do they do? They should have a plan in place should an emergency arise.
  7. Specific Circumstances: Ask how they handle dogs under certain circumstances? Older, sick, scared. What do they do as a groomer to care for each dog and their personality?
  8. Say no to Kennel Dryers: Under no circumstance should a groomer be using a Kennel dryer. It saves them time so they can get to work on the next dog; however, it is not good for your dog. Never, ever allow a dryer to be placed on your dog while the groomer is working on someone else.
  9. Ask for References: What are other people saying about the facility? Don’t just ask the groomer for references either. Ask friends and neighbors what they know about the groomer. Join town groups that provide information about local businesses. Do your research. One place to start is the National Dog Groomers Association of America.
  10. Mobile Vets: The convenience of having the groomer come to you is saves time but is also a benefit to Fido because he doesn’t have the discomfort of the ride to/from groomer and or the stress of an unfamiliar environment and being around noisy dogs.

These are just a few of the many steps you should take before Fido goes to the groomer! The point is this: Do your research! Be proactive. Don’t feel like you are being pushy. Any reputable groomer will take the time to put you and your pet at ease!

Need a groomer for your pet? We don’t offer this service but we have a list of groomers we network with in the Snohomish County area. Give us a call today for a recommendation.

Does Spot need a walk prior to his grooming appointment so he is calm and relaxed? Contact TAILored Pet Services today by filling out the contact form so we can get you scheduled!

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