How to Become a Dog Groomer in New Mexico

dog care

Dog groomers are now in demand in New Mexico.

People who are interested in entering this field expect to find a rewarding career with animals.

This means good job prospects and salaries.

That’s why we’ve gathered all the necessary information about this career.

So read on to find out how you can become a dog groomer in New Mexico.

Dog Grooming: What It Entails

Like in other states, dog grooming is rapidly developing in New Mexico.

As such, it has made dog grooming services in constant high demand.

So a dog groomer like you has plenty of opportunities to work in salons, animal hospitals, pet stores, etc.

The moment you get hired, your tasks include but aren’t limited to:

  • Bathing
  • Fur trimming
  • Care and maintenance
  • Styling

Bear in mind that you also need some knowledge on skin diseases affecting dogs.

If you notice some during the dog’s physical inspection, then you should notify pet owners immediately.

Advise them on the next steps, especially if it needs a visit to the vet.

Seeing as you need to know how to handle animals and how to groom them appropriately, you need to undergo training.

The information below can help you with the education and training you need as a future dog groomer.

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Requirements to Become Dog Groomer in New Mexico

Everything starts with proper education and training.

Although you don’t need a college degree to be a groomer, an education can earn you certification, which helps with your job prospects and salaries.

The choice is yours if you want to enroll in a school or become an apprentice to an experienced dog groomer.

Luckily, New Mexico has a lot of dog grooming schools and training programs available.

Expect to spend about 50 hours of coursework, depending on the program you’ve chosen.

During that time, you’ll be taught the following:

  • Breed history
  • Grooming standards and practices
  • Basic first aid
  • Restraining and handling techniques

In regards to apprenticeship, you’ll learn knowledge and skills through hands-on experience.

We suggest that you visit your local vet clinic, kennel, or humane society if they offer any internships to newcomers.

You may also volunteer or work part-time at these facilities, especially if you can’t afford to go to a grooming school.

Your aim here is to gain some fundamental skills and experience.

Volunteering will be much appreciated by the facility’s staff, and, in return, they will help you achieve excellence in this field.

Certification and Licensing in New Mexico

taking the dog groomer certification exam

Upon finishing the education or training, you’re not legally required to get the certification.

However, it won’t hurt to get one.

Most schools usually offer a certification program where you get a certificate after completion.

If possible, we encourage you to take one by the National Dog Groomers Association of America (NDGAA).

Their program’s available for entry-level as well as master groomers.

It consists of practical demonstrations and written examinations to prove your competency.

If you pass the test, you will become a National Certified Master Groomer.

Potential Salary in New Mexico

The certification means better job opportunities and higher salaries.

According to, New Mexico dog groomers can expect to earn an average annual salary of $32,601 as of January 2022.

Entry-level dog groomers usually earn less than the salary range, which is $26,601 to $40,701.

Take a look at your potential earnings if you belong to a certain percentile.

Percentile Salary
10% $21,138
25% $26,601
50% $32,601
75% $40,701
90% $48,076

Note, however, that your salary depends on the type of facility that you work in and the level of experience and education you have.

So those working in pet stores or private grooming salons receive better salaries than those in animal hospitals and kennels.

The table below shows how much you can earn in different places in New Mexico.

Average Annual Salary by Location

Location Avg. Annual Salary
Albuquerque $32,579
Las Cruces $29,452
Santa Fe $32,744
Rio Rancho $32,475
Roswell $30,388
Farmington $32,141
Alamogordo $30,907
Clovis $30,694
Hobbs $29,892
Carlsbad $30,388

Regional Salary in New Mexico

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Albuquerque, NM850$31,890$15.33$50,220$23,920
Farmington, NM50$28,390$13.65$35,340$23,920
Las Cruces, NM140$27,780$13.35$36,370$23,920
Santa Fe, NM240$32,120$15.44$42,310$26,370
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Animal Caretakers, OCC Code 39-2021, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Helpful Resources

Reaching a certification doesn’t mean that you have finished your education and training.

This field is constantly developing and changing, so you should be aware of the latest news and trends.

In other words, you must keep up with the industry.

You can do so through continuing education, ongoing training, and joining professional associations.

Final Words

If you’re a dog lover, then you might find a career in dog grooming enjoyable.

Not only can you spend your days with dogs, but you can also earn sufficient income to support your lifestyle.

Of course, to do so, you should get training and education.

Employers nowadays prefer that you have a bit of job experience, as well as a certification.

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