How to Choose a Groomer: Puppies And Grooming

Choosing a good groomer can be tricky, especially if you’re not familiar with the process. In this blog puppies and grooming, we will provide tips on how to choose a good groomer and ensure that your puppy gets the best possible care. We’ll discuss the different types of groomers and the different services they offer, as well as provide a list of tips to help you make an informed decision when choosing a groomer. So whether you’re new to grooming or have been using the same groomer for years, this post is for you.

“Muffin” is a valued part of the family. Sharon... the gentle touch of an artist.How do you go about choosing a competent person to groom her? It takes lots of careful handling to properly groom a dog, not to mention the precautions required around dangerous, sharp implements like scissors and electric clippers?  A dog or cat groomer will be bathing you pet in soapy water and rinsing thoroughly.  We surely aren’t going to trust her to “just anybody”.  So… how do you choose a groomer?  Here is what I would advise anyone to do who is seeking a careful and competent pet groomer.

Puppies And Grooming

How to Choose a Groomer

1) First of all… ask around. Every time a dog leaves the groomer, it is a walking advertisement. Talk to your veterinarian, your kennel manager, your neighbor. If you see a dog on the street with a style you like, stop the owner and ask where the dog was groomed. People are usually very willing to talk about their pets, especially their new “do”. Some veterinary offices have policies not to refer clients to any certain groomer or breeder. Don’t despair; ask more specific questions like “Have you treated any problems from this groomer, such as cuts or clipper abrasions? Have you had any complaints about this groomer?”

2) Call the groomer you are interested in using. Ask him/her questions. “Did you go to grooming school or apprentice with a professional groomer?” “How long have you been grooming?” “Do you have much experience with {insert your breed here}?”. “Do you have a problem putting poodle feet on a cocker? {Or some other non-standard clip} “Are you a member of any professional grooming organization?” There is a national organization called National Dog Groomers of America Association and many states have their own groomers’ organizations.

3) Some states require that groomers are licensed and certified in flea/tick applications. Ask if she or he is properly certified. Keep in mind that groomers are usually on an extremely tight schedule. Ask him/her if they would be able to call you back to answer these questions when they have ample time to talk. It’s hard to answer questions while fluff drying a dog. You should be able to develop a rapport with the potential groomer that will give you an overall impression. Hopefully it will be a good impression.

4) Then trust your intuition. Just by asking around you will be able find answers to most of your questions. Using a groomer for the first time can be a disconcerting experience. If you’ve done some research by asking around and then place your trust in your groomer and then see a good result… then you can pamper yourself, too, like “Muffin” was pampered.

Sharon Larson has been involved in animal health care since 1979. She attended the Wisconsin School of Professional Dog Grooming and has been grooming professionally since 1986.

Puppies And Grooming


So you just brought that new family member home and you are wondering about bathing it.  Maybe it smells a little like… well, like puppy smell !  Yes you can bathe even a very young pup and often a good bath really perks them up and helps to rid them of anyI trust my dog groomer. dirt, stool or food that has hidden itself in the puppy’s coat.

You can purchase puppy shampoo (get the tearless kind, it doesn’t sting if it gets in the eyes) and wet the pup down completely.  Lather up the shampoo all over.  When you rinse the shampoo off, be sure that you get all of it off!  Even a little shampoo left on the coat can irritate the skin later on.  Rinse twice as long as you think you need to.  You do not have to put anything in the eyes prior to the bath… just try not to get any soap in the eyes.

You can put little cotton plugs in the ear canals to help keep the water and shampoo out of the ear canals, but this isn’t absolutely necessary.  When you rinse be sure the water is warm and comfortable.   The surest way to make the pup hate a bath is to use water that is too cold or too hot.

Now that the pup has been rinsed off well, just wrap the little rascal in a big towel and gently rub the puppy dry.   You can also use a blow dryer but try not to scare the heck out of the pup if you are going to use one.  If it is warm outside a good run after a bath is an absolute delight for a dog.  Watch out, though, they usually head straight for the dirt or mud to roll around in!  (All dogs have been born with some sort of agreement among themselves to do this!)

HOW OFTEN?  You can bathe a dog whenever it really needs to be cleaned up.  In general, though, a bath every three weeks is about right.  And some breeds like Dobes, Boston Terriers and others with short coats may rarely need a bath.  Old English Sheepdogs and Collies are a different story!

WHAT KIND?  In general just use a mild dog/puppy shampoo.  A professional groomer can tell you if your dog needs a special formula to alleviate dry skin, allergic dermatitis or very sensitive skin.   (The first thing to do if your dog does have dry skin is evaluate the diet!   See ThePetCenter’s articles on Nutrition.)


In short haired dogs just use a soft brush and sweep it over the coat in the direction of hair growth.  Long haired dogs and dogs with a double coat (short fuzzy hairs underneath long coarse hairs) can tolerate short wire brushes and steel combs.  Always be certain that when using the wire brushes that you are not scratching the dog’s skin! Some dogs really need to be brushed out every day.  Others may never need a brushing because their coats are so short and tight to the skin.

There is no doubt that puppies and grooming are a fun and exciting combination. However, it’s important to choose a groomer who is experienced and qualified to handle the care and grooming of puppies. By doing so, you can be sure that your pup will receive the best possible care and be looked after in a comfortable and safe environment. If you have any questions about choosing a groomer or any other aspects of puppy care, please let us know in the comments section below. We would be happy to help you out!

Frequently Asked Questions

How often do puppies need grooming?

A short cut can last a dog two to three months, but to prevent matting, you should get your dog groomed every four to six weeks if your groomer leaves more than an inch of fur at a cut. Dogs with curly or wavy coats are the same.

What is a puppy cut in grooming?

The puppy cut is essentially one length all around. Between 1-2 inches is the most typical length for the body, legs, tail, head, and ears. Usually, a clipper with a lengthy guard comb over the blade is used.

How do puppies get groomed?

Start by detangling matted hair with a pinhead brush or comb, paying special attention to the back, tail, and legs. To bring out the natural shine in silky coats, brush and comb the coat first forward and then backward. Consider taking your long-haired puppy to a groomer to keep them clean if you own one.

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