Picking the Pawfect Grooming Salon For Your Furry Friend!

Samantha Mobley  |  Espree Animal Products

Going to the grooming salon, for most dogs, is not exactly a fun experience. Whether your dog is a seasoned pro, or a newbie in terms of grooming, the process can be very stressful for some dogs- no matter what the age. There are many different factors to consider when bringing your pet to a salon to allow maximum comfort and as little stress as possible.

First, your dog needs to be current on all vaccinations. Most salons require the rabies and Bordetella vaccination to be groomed. You may ask why they need shots, but this not only ensures that your pet is healthy, but it also prevents them from contracting and spreading other dog related illnesses in the salon such as kennel cough. At most facilities this is mandatory for grooming. Also, if your dog has any kind of history of aggression towards people, other animals, or specific things being done (like trimming nails, cage aggression etc.) please notify the grooming facility. They will be appreciative and take the proper measures to ensure that your pet and the staff do not get harmed during the grooming process.

Senior pets:

If your pet is a senior dog (10+ years old), it is usually recommended that you take them to a vet for their grooming. Senior dogs often times have some health issues, and they will be assessed and monitored for their entire grooming process. If something were to ever happen, a team of veterinary technicians and a veterinarian would be there to help with anything that may occur.

Injuries/ailments/aggressive behavior:
Taking your dog to a vet is also recommended if your dog has any major ailments or issues (pregnancy, trouble standing, hip dysplasia, a broken bone, severe skin conditions, post-op surgery, extreme aggressive behavior, severe matting) so that they can be handled and cared for accordingly. If your dog is extremely aggressive and cannot be taken to a regular salon, it can be sedated by the vet to ensure a safe and stress free groom for both the groomer and dog.

Corporate and mom and pop shops:
If your dog has no issues, then you could take them to virtually any grooming salon of your choice. With that said, keep in mind that corporate grooming salons often adhere to stricter rules and time tables than their mom and pop counterparts. Dogs will often be more closely monitored at a corporate salon, and they will generally be done in 4 hours or less. In the event that a cut, nick or burn would occur, you would rather be at a corporate salon who will foot the bill than a mom and pop shop that does not (usually) have any legal obligation to pay a vet bill in regards to any incidents.  A regular salon is great as well. They will often let you drop off before work and pick up afterwards. They are generally owned by a seasoned groomer who is very knowledgeable, and the staff usually consists of 3-7 groomers in the salon. If you are trying out a new salon, make sure you read current reviews online, and ask to take a look around and meet your groomer. Also, have the type of hairstyle you would like in mind, or written down to help them achieve the cut that you would like. Keep in mind that a full service groom generally takes around 4 hours depending on the size and condition of the dog. This accounts for the bathing, drying and the full haircut.

Booking an appointment:
After you’ve done your research and found a place that’s right for you and your pet, it’s time to book the appointment. Call the salon, make sure you have your info ready about your dog (breed, age, records, temperament, issues etc.), and see what time works best for you and the groomers. Some salons are booked out weeks in advance, so the sooner you can get an appointment, the better. Fridays and Saturdays are generally the busiest times for grooming salons, so a haircut may take a bit longer just due to the sheer volume of dogs scheduled for that day.

Hopefully with these tips you can find the right grooming salon for you!

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