If your dream job is to work with dogs then read on…
Craig, Kathleen and Kerrie recently trained and became fully qualified dog groomers at The Dog House in Norfolk. Just look at their smiles! As they begin their new careers, let’s ask them for their insights on how to become a dog groomer.
What were you doing before you started dog grooming training with us?
Craig is 29 years old. His career started in sales and before he began his iPET Network Level 3 Diploma in Dog grooming & Salon Management course at The Dog House, Norfolk, he ran his own dog walking business in Leeds.
Kathleen is 59 years old and left her long term career as a social care support worker to re-train as a professional dog groomer, here at The Dog House.
Kerrie, 33 years old was running her own cleaning business before enrolling with us on her 30 day iPET Network Level 3 Diploma in Dog grooming & Salon Management course.
Why did you want to become a dog groomer?
“I enjoyed being a dog walker but I wanted to succeed in something that was more creative and skilful.”
“I had been grooming my own dogs for years, but always wanted to train properly and change career – it was just never the right time.”
“I’ve always wanted to work with animals from a very young age, I went to college and studied a diploma in animal care, worked in a pet shop and then worked in a vets for a short time as a vet nursing assistant.”
“After having a conversation in the kitchen with a close friend who is a dog groomer I decided this was the right thing for me to do, and I haven’t looked back since!”
Was it a scary decision?
“It was a natural transition having already run my own pet business, but after coronavirus it was still a massive risk.”
“Not in the end. I knew it was right for me to leave my job and start a new career. The biggest unknown was wondering ‘would I be good enough?’ but I hoped that if I worked hard my confidence would grow.”
“No hesitation at all.”
Why do you think it’s important to train for a qualification?
“The qualification safeguards you, your customers and the industry. Anyone can take a pair of clippers or scissors to their own dog or customers- but doing so with finesse and appropriate handling takes professional training and practice.”
“Because having a broad knowledge base helps you make informed and considered decisions, and having solid practical tuition teaches you to groom beautifully and safely.”
“I think it is important so you know all about the animal welfare act, how and what tools to use properly, knowing first aid for the animal, how to handle the dog correctly and what signs to look out for if the dog is nervous or aggressive and general all round knowledge to help you become a better groomer and business owner.”
How do you feel now you’re out there doing it?
“I love it! I’m always learning and always want to take my skills and knowledge further.”
I am absolutely loving it and just wish that I had been braver and done this years ago!
“I was nervous to start with being on my own but as the weeks go by and I’m doing more and more dogs on my own the confidence is growing.”
Are you making a living from your new dog grooming venture?
“I am indeed.”
“Yes I am.”
“Yes I qualified end of November and have 75 dogs on my books and counting!”
Are you happy in your career choice and work?
“Extremely. I just feel lucky that I have found my ‘calling.’”
“Very much so. I am happier than I have been in years.”
“Yes I just wish I done it sooner!”
Do you have any advice for people interested in how to become a dog groomer?
“Seize the opportunity. If it’s time for a change, then go for it all in!”
“It’s a steep learning curve not without its own challenges.”
“Do your research, and find the right teaching salon so that you can learn from the best.”
“Do research, make sure it’s the right choice for you before you commit to it as its expensive to set up on your own initially. If you can shadow a groomer to start with then do, so you get an idea of what the job involves. It’s very physical, long hours on your feet, and not every dog will stand still so patience is a big thing to have.”
On leaving The Dog House Craig set up his own dog grooming business LedByLead Dog Grooming
Craig has recently returned to Leeds and is currently working full time as a team leader in The Groom Room for Pets At Home.
Kathleen has also secured herself a full time job at Pets At Home.
Her future plans are to set up from home and she is also interested in getting in to dog grooming teaching.
Kerrie’s new business is K’s K9 Kuts, check out her lovely work.
Come along for a free taster visit & find out more!