Cookies N Clean is currently offering a paid internship for select candidates who are interested in becoming a dog groomer. This is a position of full-time employment that is a path for you to become a dog groomer.
We want to be very transparent on expectations of becoming a dog groomer. While you see beautiful and fun creativity on Social Media what you don't see is all the work. Dog grooming is a physical job. Especially when you're first starting out.
Dogs are heavy, don't like to sit still, use their teeth to communicate, and what goes in also comes out, it's messy. They are like working with children. Pets require exceptional patience.
Many individuals want to become dog groomers because they don't like people and prefer animals. This is an awful combination for becoming a pet groomer; dogs detect insecurities which leads to dog aggression. Dogs that don't feel safe will defend themselves.
Moreover, dogs are not customers, their owners are. If you don't like people dogs owners won't like you either. You will struggle in areas of communication, retention, and overall customer service.
The best groomers in our experience are people who are well balanced. Not overly into pets but also can have a comfortable conversation with humans.
It's important for us to be transparent here as we are looking to invest our knowledge and time into creating the best pet groomers. We will not accept nor pass people into this program if they can't answer the phone and talk with their clients as an example.
The real why is dog groomers make an impact on their communities. Everyone owns a dog after 2020 now. All dogs need maintenance and support. Happy dogs—happy owners—happy community.
A dog that can't be groomed shall be subject to surrender. It's a true fact. If a dog is continually turned away and it needs grooming it will be subject to surrendering, abandonment, and or euthanasia. Our grooming saves dogs' lives. We've met so many groom shops and 'groomers' that pride themselves on turning away difficult dogs. Where are they supposed to go? If you don't work on that dog who will? Instead of turning away dogs we work our magic to find ways to make it work. Starting with building a relationship with the client.
We don't value money over groomer safety. If it isn't safe then it isn't grooming. There're techniques, training, patience, time, and it's work to learn to find success with difficult dogs. There's also it's just not a good fit. Some dogs do better with different people and that's ok too. When you're able to work on any dog that comes through the door, safely, it's very rewarding. To see and be a part of a dog's transformation, while emotional, is powerful.
There's no limit to the imagination. You can be very creative with dog grooming. Dog grooming is very artistic which means while we can teach the basics, shape, balance, design, flow, textures, and color it will be your vision that comes to life. No, you don't need to be the most creative or artistic person to be a successful groomer. What 99% of groomers you see out in the industry performing does not require any creativity. Tools such as clippers do all the work. That's why when clients ask for shear work the dog is always "matted" all the sudden.
The creative part of grooming will require the most time to become proficient and we will help you accomplish your goals.
As a dog groomer you are 100% responsible for the life of a pet when it is in your care. Dog's can't talk. They try to communicate to the best of their abilities but have no words. You are their protector, leader, and guide. Every pet you service is your pet. They deserve safety, comfort, and quality. Selecting a pet groomer is one of the more difficult and uncomfortable choices a pet parent will have to make. They need people they can trust. If you have no integrity you have no business become a pet groomer. You must be capable of admitting your mistakes or when something is not correct. If you can't look a customer in the eye and tell them you made a mistake you are not fit to be a pet groomer. Mistakes happen and it's how we handle them that determines if you can be trusted.
What's the pay. While becoming a pet groomer is a rewarding creative job people do need to make a living. This whole explanation of necessary character elements for becoming a great groomer means finding excellent pet groomers are hard to find. If you can become an excellent groomer you will have no problem with making an excellent wage. It takes time for a groomer to develop a reputation. You also have to earn your reputation. Quality grooming isn't enough. It will attract many but a great groomer really enjoys what they do and has excellent customer service.
Groomers typically earn about $40,000-$65,000 a year; amount includes tips collected. At Cookies N Clean we do have some groomers who are making over $90,000 a year. To get to this level requires years of perfection. You cannot rush and succeed. It will take time.
As a pet groomer you will need tools. As you become more advanced you will need more tools. $2000 would be a more than adequate budget for tools necessary for performing groomer. At that budget you could afford the best tools. With going the paid internship route for dog grooming you would have more budget to afford better tools. You don't want to go cheap on your tools. Quality tools can really make a difference in your success. Cookies N Clean does offer an Employee Tool purchase program. We buy tools for our employees and allow them to make payments each month or week. This helps our groomers to get what they need when they need it. We recommend you DO NOT buy any tools until you've started your training. What you find online from groomer discussions can lead you down a path of the worst tools. You have to understand there are groomers who will tell you they've been grooming longer than you've been alive and they have been using the same brands since they started and have never tried anything new. This leads to poor tool selections. You won't need any tools to start so it's best to wait.
Start Your Own Shop
No need to avoid this one. We have few individuals who would like to open their own shop. Becoming a business owner can be rewarding and lucrative for the right person. If you would like to be a business owner and NOT a pet groomer then we would recommend opening your own shop. You will not be able to be a full-time groomer and build a business. Business owner is its own full-time profession and requires about 30-40hrs a week. The larger the business the more demanding it will be. If you plan to be the only employee at your business you will make the same money as an employee after you pay all your business expenses. Some of our best groomers are people who tried to go out on their own and found that they really just wanted to be a dog groomer.
Grooming is physical. We are on a schedule that provides our groomers with more time off to rest and recover. While this schedule allows ample time off you do end up working all days of the week including weekends. If you can't work Sundays that would mean you're not available to work weekends, and no we are not a good fit. Work shifts are 10hrs a day.
We turn away so many nice individuals who just don't have enough work experience. While we don't require Junior Groomers to have any pet industry experience we do want people who have regular work experience. We find that basic work ethics like showing up on-time, not calling-out-sick, customer service, communication, mature co-worker, and cleanliness come better from people with work experience. If you are serious about becoming a pet groomer and have no job experience we STRONGLY recommend you stay away from the pet industry as a whole for your first places of employment.
Pet grooming facilities can be toxic. These are facilities opened by groomers with no business experience or experience working anywhere else but pet grooming and decided to open their own facility. All the rumors of catty, dirty, and poor business practices come from situations just described. Best to steer clear of accepting employment at a grooming facility if it is to be your first place of employment.
Veterinary or grooming school applicants, while it is always important to be open to new ideas and experience you should always observe before you push your education in a new profession. What you learned, while from a credible source, could still be wrong or was more of a guide. Never assume. Unfortunately, education, doesn't out weigh experience. They are best applied together.
If you're ready to become a pet groomer and understand the expectations and commitment required then we are a good fit. We are just as committed to your success as you are to becoming a great dog groomer.