Dog groomer

Animals, land and environment

Career outlook for dog groomer

UK Salary Ranges





Currently employed in Scotland


Salary information is provided by the "National Careers Service". "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures. Due to COVID-19 the jobs market is constantly changing. Some of the information may not reflect the current situation.

What's it like?

You would help dog owners keep their dog’s coat healthy and looking good. You’d advise them about coat care, grooming and diet.

You’d need to be confident with dogs and be able to handle the animals firmly but gently. You’d have to be patient with them so you can calm and control nervous dogs.

With each owner, you would discuss the grooming they would like, whether the dog is used to being groomed and the best way to handle the animal.

It would be important to start by checking for any sore areas or lumps on the dog's skin, and for fleas or parasites.

You would then

  • Carefully shape the dog's coat with electric clippers or a stripping knife
  • Shampoo and dry the dog's coat
  • Give it a final trim with scissors

Sometimes you would also clip the dog's claws and clean its teeth and ears.

You would often follow standards for how different breeds should look – for example, poodles are usually clipped to a particular shape. This is particularly important when dogs are being prepared for a show.

Working conditions


In a dog grooming salon, you would usually work around 35 hours a week, Monday to Saturday, with one day off during the week. If you were self-employed, you would arrange your own working hours.


The work can be quite physically demanding with larger breeds. It can also be dusty and hairy, and would not be suitable for some people with certain allergies.

UK employment status





Self employed


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Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you'll need.


 There are no formal entry qualifications for this role however some employers may ask for applicants to have a good general education (SCQF Level 3-5). 

Helpful to have

Previous experience with animals.

Work-based qualifications such as a Scottish Vocational Qualification in Animal Care (SVQ Level 2/3).

As many dog groomers are self-employed, it could be useful to have qualifications and experience in:

  • customer services, such as Skills for Work retailing (SCQF Level 5)
  • or enterprise such as SQA Enterprise and Employability SQA Awards (SCQF Level 4/5)