Trusting a stranger with your dog, especially when sharp objects are concerned, can be hard to do! How do you go about finding good dog groomer? I recently had to find a new grooming salon for the Poms, and here’s some handy tips from what I learned in my search!
*Ask around! Do you have friends with dogs with coats similar to your dogs that always look nice? Ask them for a referral! Just because your friend’s Poodle always looks great doesn’t meant their groomer knows how to groom a Shih Tzu or Pom as well. Every groomer has breeds they excel at, so make sure you ask for recommendations from friends with similar dogs.
*Check the big review sites- yelp, google, etc. Look for reviews that say things like the shop looked clean, the groomers took time with the dogs and seemed to care. Pay less attention to nitpicking, to people’s ideas what pricing is like and other subjective reviews. The important ones are the ones that show the personality and care that the groomer gives dogs.
*Go visit! Depending on the shop layout you may not be able to watch a dog be groomed, but you’ll be able to see if it’s clean, comfortable, where the dogs are kept and get an overall feel for the place.
*Ask questions of the groomers. Are they CPR certified? How long have they been grooming? What are their favorite and least favorite breeds to groom?
*Find out what products they use. They should use products that are as natural as possible instead of harsh, chemical-filled ones. Do they hand dry every dog fully or use a cage dryer? I will only take my dogs to people who 100% hand dry. Cage dryers are unacceptable.
*Before committing to a full groom, try taking your pup in for a nail trim or bath. See how the groomer interacts with your dog and how your dog interacts with the groomer.
*Do they ask for previous health and injury history? Did they ask you for vaccine records? Have you fill out and sign paperwork? They should do all of these. Didn’t ask for vaccine history? Don’t leave your dog.
*Don’t automatically go with the cheapest! There may be a reason they’re inexpensive- they may not be well trained, may be a new groomer, or may use inferior, cheap products on the dogs. It is worth it to pay extra for experience and good quality products!
A little bit of time and foot work can lead to a lasting relationship with a groomer you trust with your dog!