How to Become a Dog Groomer in New York

groomed dog for photoshoot

Pet owners now take care of their dogs, devoting time and attention to their looks.

Once in a while, they take their dogs to dog groomers to keep them healthy and beautiful.

And that’s the core of your work as a dog groomer in New York.

On this page, we’ve gathered information about this career to help you decide if this is the job for you.

So read on to learn more.

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Requirements to Become a Dog Groomer in New York

Yes, New York state has no strict requirements for you to start working as a dog groomer.

However, we both know that every career starts with the proper education and training.

As a dog groomer, you must be knowledgeable and skilled on the tasks entrusted to you, such as:

  • Bathing
  • Nail trims
  • Fur cuts
  • Styling

More so if you want to open your own dog grooming salon in the future.

Fortunately, the state has over 20 dog grooming schools and training programs available for you.

You have the option to take it in-person or online, and it will consume 40–50 hours of coursework.

Typically, the lessons will involve:

  • Breed history
  • Grooming standards
  • First aid and safety
  • Other related topics

After all that coursework, you’ll then be doing hands-on practices through internships at the school’s partner facility.

It can be at a local shelter, grooming salon, or animal hospital.

Understand that employers place emphasis on practical experience more than anything.

For this reason, some aspiring dog groomers in New York choose to enter apprenticeships rather than schooling.

Certification and Licensing in New York

New York state has no certification and licensing requirements.

Even so, the National Dog Groomers Association of America (NDGAA) gives certification exams to those interested.

You’ll only have to complete the training workshop and practical assessments to be eligible to take the exam.

If you pass it, you’ll earn the title of National Certified Master Groomer.

Potential Salary and Job Prospects in New York

looking for jobs with good salary for dog groomers

Like any career, a dog groomer’s salary varies due to the factors affecting it.

Take a closer look at how each factor plays in determining the salary of each place.

Experience and Education

We all know that people who have extensive training and education can expect to earn more.

As such, entry-level dog groomers can only expect to earn about $8–$10 an hour.

On the other hand, experienced ones can easily earn $15–$20 per hour, or as much as $39,000 per year.


How much you will earn depends on the city or region where you will work.

Usually, urban areas like New York City offer higher salaries, ranging from $31,000 to $48,000.

Type of Business

Generally speaking, pet stores and private salons offer higher salaries than animal shelters and clinics.

On average, you can make about 20% more per year by working there.

You can also earn a decent income with mobile dog grooming services, which are becoming popular in places like New York City.

Many clients flock to this type of business as it provides convenience with less hassle to them.

And so with these factors combined, we can justify the salary offers for each place in the state in the table below.

Average Annual Salary by Location

Location Avg. Annual Salary
New York $41,926
Buffalo $33,136
Rochester $34,157
Yonkers $39,939
Syracuse $34,152
Albany $35,214
New Rochelle $39,693
Mount Vernon $39,922
Schenectady $35,077
Utica $33,180

Regional Salary in New York

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY930$35,470$17.06$48,200$28,090
Binghamton, NY140$31,560$15.18$35,640$27,530
Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls, NY880$32,850$15.79$39,370$28,000
Elmira, NY40$32,660$15.7$44,990$27,810
Glens Falls, NY90$33,640$16.17$46,290$27,460
Ithaca, NY80$34,590$16.63$43,680$28,920
Kingston, NY160$36,050$17.33$49,160$29,710
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA12,040$36,910$17.75$46,490$28,760
Rochester, NY900$32,990$15.86$43,730$27,460
Syracuse, NY520$34,150$16.42$44,170$27,790
Utica-Rome, NY150$32,430$15.59$35,680$27,620
Watertown-Fort Drum, NY60$32,960$15.85$44,590$27,460
* 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

You might have gotten your certification, but it doesn’t mean you have to stop learning.

Furthering it through continuing education courses will enable you to:

  • Be in line with the latest trends
  • Meet the desires and needs of modern pet owners

You can utilize these resources to ensure that you get the most out of your career.

Final Words

Dog grooming is a business that requires you to possess love for animals first and skills and knowledge second.

In other words, you must love and be invested in animal care before you can consider entering this career.

Only when you’ve considered this through can you proceed with the training and education.

Also, note that practical experience matters here.

That’s because, with more experience, employers are assured that you’d be able to handle dog grooming well with careful and tender hands.

USA How to Become a Dog/Pet Groomer by State