Dog Groomer Salary: How Much Do Dog Groomers Make?

Making a living should come second for qualified dog groomers.

There are many things that matter to dog groomers and the most important is to take good care of all the dogs that come to their salon.

The happiness of the animals always comes first.

They build their careers out of caring for animals.

You should, however, know that everyone needs to make a living not forgetting the most gracious people and therefore, those taking care of all innocent pets deserve a good payment.

To find out how much exactly a dog groomer makes, and then here is what you should read to know all about their job.

Average Groomer Salaries

For one to become a groomer, he has to make a critical choice at the beginning of his career.

If it is a place to work, there are many choices like working in a pet store or animal shelter.

Some people dream of establishing their own salons and some are fine with freelancing on their own schedule.

With all these ideas, the lifestyle of a dog groomer will be a determinant in the majority of the groomer’s salary.

You may not be stuck in one position as this is suggesting.

You should know that by gaining experience, you will have a lot of employment opportunities at your disposal.

Let’s look at the average wages for jobs in the industry of dog grooming:

  • Retail pet groomer: In this job, the pet groomer is able to make an average of around $10 per hour in the position of entering the industry. As the groomer gains experience, he is able to make around $14 per hour at the retail level.
  • Freelance pet groomer: the freelancers are expected to earn close to the national average that is around $28,000 in a year. A freelance groomer is in a position to make set his own prices hence become more competitive depending on his location. For instance, a groomer located in New York has a high earning potential but faced with many competitors than those working in rural areas.
  • Salon groomer: for those groomers working in a salon will approximately make $22 for one dog and most groomers work on five dogs a day. Therefore, it implies that a groomer can earn $28,000 per year if he works in five days a week.

Based on the salon, dog groomers have the capacity to have a commission per dog as getting more experience in the field.

Average Annual Salary by State

StateAvg. Annual Salary
New Hampshire$36,458
New Jersey$40,696
New Mexico$31,783
New York$40,696
North Carolina$33,229
North Dakota$31,420
Rhode Island$36,099
South Carolina$33,105
South Dakota$30,916
West Virginia$34,921


In every industry, people expect to have high salaries as they get more professional knowledge and experience.

For those at the entry level, groomers can earn about $20,000 in a year and tips are not included either.

It should be known that you will have higher commissions if you have more skills as a groomer.

Clients will prefer having someone with grooming certification since they believe that their dogs are in good hands.

Additionally, as the groomer works on more dogs, they will have an impact on the salary in the future.

In case one has more appointments for dog grooming, he is likely to get more payments and more clients.

Years 1-5

When starting as a professional in pet grooming, you will earn about $20,000 per year.

In case you get proper training and be a certified groomer, there are chances of starting with a higher wage.

People working as retail groomers are in a great position in case they need to gain experience after going through a grooming course for dogs.

Years 5-8

One is able to start negotiations on wages and pricing since he has some few years of experience as a pet groomer.

One will have a potential for more commissions per dog if he works in a salon.

This is because most clients will want to give a tip in case a groomer does a perfect job.

Freelance groomers can also raise their prices as their skills increase since they will groom efficiently hence more chances to groom extra dogs.

Years 8+

One is likely to be the person in charge of a salon or start his own business with eight years of experience.

At this stage, dog groomers have a lot of expertise hence able to establish a business and hire some groomers to work for you.

There are high chances that you will be earning more than $36,000 per year at this level.

The Costs

Just like any other job, one has to begin somewhere.

You do not expect to have a lot of money just at the beginning of your career.

Since this job is a trade, you have to work first as a student groomer or an apprentice hence you will earn as you learn.

We all know that the industry of pet grooming is unregulated hence you technically don’t have to be certified.

A course in this career will only cost just a fraction of what one can pay to get a university or a college degree.

In the current world, the internet provides online options that are a better way of saving even more.

They are also super convenient.

Not Just About Money

People will always ask if one can live with earning a dog grooming salary and the correct answer is yes.

Out there, there are a lot of full-time groomers.

For people who are thinking of having a 6-figure salary, then this job will not be the best career choice for them since it is not a scheme of ‘get rich quick’.

What should sprout first in love for animals is the passion for pet grooming.

In case you realize that you don’t have the passion for the job then you may not enjoy doing the job.

On the other hand, if you love animals, then this career can provide a lot of things and not just a way of getting a living.

This does not mean that money is less important but grooming is so much important that your money needs.

The job requires a lot of energy and therefore it will keep you happy as well as giving you a good physical shape.

You can’t deny that there is some joy in working with animals and at the same time, dog owners are great people who make good clients.

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