Is Dog Grooming Illegal? (Solved & Explained!)

Dog grooming is not illegal but it is regulated. Depending on the state in which you live, there are laws that govern dog groomers such as licensing, insurance, and animal welfare regulations.

However, the laws vary from state to state, and some states do not require you to have a license but you must be able to demonstrate that you follow all animal welfare legislation accordingly. 

Do I Need a License To Be A Dog Groomer?

The issue of licensing for dog groomers has been up for debate, as there is currently a lack of standardized licensing requirements across the US.

Currently, all freelance dog groomers do not need a license. However, organizations and businesses that employ dog groomers do need to have a premises license for dog grooming.

Each state enacts and enforces grooming regulations differently, so it is always best to check with your local animal welfare department before setting up a dog grooming business.

Can I Be A Dog Groomer From Home?

You can certainly set up your own dog grooming business from your home. Self-employed dog groomers do not need licenses but they must be able to demonstrate a working knowledge of animal welfare and have the right equipment available to do the job safely.

You will need to set up the right space for dog grooming that includes sufficient space to meet the needs of dogs of all sizes that includes the right safety equipment for safe grooming.

How Much Does It Cost to Run a Dog Grooming Business?

To start a dog grooming business you will need to invest in start-up costs to make sure you have the right space and equipment.

It costs roughly $50,000 to start a dog grooming business from scratch. This will include the equipment, supplies, business licensing applications, space to process paperwork, and if you need to hire an assistant that will cost extra too.

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Of course, you can spend less than this if you plan to work from home or solo. If you are a mobile dog groomer then you will need to budget for a dog-friendly convertible vehicle that is big enough for everything you need.

Are Dog Groomers in Demand?

Dog groomers are always in demand because there are many breeds that require grooming regularly.

Dogs like Huskies, who have blowouts twice a year at least, benefit from professional grooming or their coats can become matted and their shredding uncontrollable. Smaller ‘designer’ breeds like Yorkshire terriers and Poodles that have delicate skin and fur are regulars at the grooming salon. 

Thier soft fur needs extra care and attention that only a professional groomer can provide.

Do I Need Planning Permission to Start a Dog Grooming Business?

If you plan to build your own premises then yes you will need planning permission to start a dog grooming business.

Not just that, even if you are going to start a dog grooming business in an established building you will still need permission to some degree.

For example, some dog groomers establish themselves inside shopping malls, but you would first need to check with the mall if they allow dogs inside.

What Equipment Do I Need To Start A Dog Grooming Business?

Like all businesses, you will need a few essential items before you can begin taking on customers.

The basic essentials for any dog groomer are:

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  • Brushes
  • Sprays
  • Shampoos and conditioners
  • Clippers
  • Scissors
  • Hairdryer
  • Bathtub
  • Harnesses
  • Grooming table
  • Cages

Once you have all of these in place you can begin advertising your services.

How Do Dog Groomers Get Customers?

Dog groomers get customers in the same way as other businesses, through word of mouth and advertising.

Some dog groomers leave their details with the local vet for referrals or post for free on local bulletin boards.

Some use social media and advertise online, or contact popular pet blogs to run adverts for them.

However, the number one method is word of mouth. Dog owners tend to know other dog owners, and if you do an exceptional job grooming their pet they will enthusiastically recommend you to friends and family. 

If you work as a pet groomer for an established company then they will get customers for you.

Do Dog Groomers Need to Be Registered?

There is currently no state or national register for dog groomers. Certificates that are awarded from accredited colleges are proof of the dog groomers’ skill level but are not a license for them to practice.

Dog groomers do not need to register that they are dog groomers with any specific authority, however, they will need to state the nature of their business when they apply for a business license, and pay taxes.

Are Dog Grooming Schools Worth It?

Yes, all dog groomers highly recommend formal training, even though it is not technically required to run a dog grooming business.

Dog grooming schools will teach you all the basics of dog grooming so you know exactly what you are doing by the time you welcome your first customer.

Dog groomers also recommend practical experience alongside formal learning and claim that they learned best by volunteering their skills at the local animal shelter to get hands-on experience and refine their skills.

Do Dog Groomers Need Insurance?

Absolutely. At the end of the day, you are working in the health and beauty sector. If anything goes wrong you could find yourself on the wrong side of a lawsuit that could be detrimental to your business if you do not have the correct insurance in place.

Secondly, you have to protect yourself and any employees. If an accident results in yourself or anyone else being harmed during a grooming session, you will need to have good insurance to cover the damages or yourself if you are unable to work for a period of time.

How Much Does Dog Grooming School Cost?

The cost of dog grooming school varies depending on your skill level and any specialist subjects you wish to undertake.

Prices start at $100 for basic training and rise from there. Advanced training in specific areas of grooming can cost up to $2000 or more. Additional costs incur for textbooks and any training tools required.