Is your canine buddy getting stinky? While bathing Fluffy is optional, it’s a must for Fido. And while many people do bathe their dogs at home, others prefer to take Fido to the salon. However, you don’t want to just take your furry friend anywhere. Going to a bad groomer risks far more than your pooch getting a bad haircut: your pet could be traumatized, or even injured, by an incompetent groomer. A Rancho Santa Fe, CA vet offers some tips on choosing a groomer in this article.
Chances are, you probably have friends, family members, neighbors, and/or coworkers who bring their pups to salons. Ask for referrals. You may also want to ask if they recommend avoiding a specific groomer.
Reviews are also helpful. While one bad review may just be a misunderstanding or a difficult customer, if you see several, it may be best to choose someone else.
Talk To The Groomer
Grooming is one area in which credentials can vary. There are a few national organizations, the National Dog Groomers Of America Association and The AKC S.A.F.E. Grooming, and several smaller professional organizations. Membership is definitely a good sign. You can also ask about training, experience, and certifications.
Any decent groomer will require proof that Fido is current on his vaccinations, including Bordetella and parvovirus vaccinations. If a groomer doesn’t require these, go elsewhere!
The state of the facility can also tell you quite a lot. Is it clean, and professional looking? Are there different stations? You may also want to ask where your dog will be kept before and after his appointments.
Some dogs require medical grooming, which may include things like anal gland expression, ear cleaning, mat removal, and pawdicures. Ask what services the groomer provides.
While hopefully Fido’s pampering session goes smoothly, there’s always a chance that something may go wrong. Ask if the groomer has first aid, and/or if they have any experience with pet CPR. You’ll also want a groomer with liability insurance.
Of course, for many, the ideal option would be to have Fido groomed by your vet. They would already have his medical records, and be familiar with any medical grooming he may need.