Groomers interested in opening their own dog grooming business will need some basic supplies to get started. Duties of a dog groomer include bathing, fur cutting, nail trimming, fur brushing, tooth and gum care and drying. A dog groomer will need a variety of tools to groom a range of dog sizes and fur and body types. Using proper supplies in a dog grooming business could mean keeping or losing a client.
Dog Nail Clippers
Groomers typically need at least two pairs of dog nail clippers for their grooming business. Small dogs need a regular pair of nail clippers and larger dogs will need a more durable, bigger pair. Both clippers should come with a cover to prevent accidental cuts. Nail clippers for large dogs will specifically state "large" on the package or product description. Others will work well with smaller dogs. Nail clippers come in guillotine style and those with a scissors-like overlap. Nail clipper style generally is a matter of preference, but groomers should purchase clippers that come with a cover and that won't rust easily.
Dog Grooming Shears
Dog grooming shears are necessary for cutting a dog's fur, either for cutting off mats from a dog's tangled fur or for beatifying a dog's coat. Many dog owners prefer that their dog's fur stay trimmed to avoid matting and excessive shedding. Some will want a complete grooming before a dog show. You will need a large variety of dog shears: straight, curved, blending, convex, stiletto and thinning.
Dog Brushes and Combs
Using the proper dog comb or brush is important to the dog's comfort and health. Since different breeds of dogs have different coats you will need a variety of dog grooming brushes and combs. You will need wire and nylon combs. Dogs with thin fur typically need a very soft brush, and dogs with thicker fur need a sturdier brush.
Dog Grooming Table
A dog grooming table will allow you to groom while standing rather than kneeling on the floor. This can help a great deal and can show the dog that he needs to stay in one spot (on the table) until you are done. You can get a folding table, which is good for a mobile grooming business. You can also choose from a hydraulic table or an electric table. Electric tables raise electronically to the height you require. Hydraulic tables use a hydraulic foot pump. It all depends on what you can afford.
Dogs need baths to get rid of any dirt and debris, and a grooming business should have adequate equipment to bathe customers' dogs. Since groomers typically bathe all kinds of dogs on a regular basis, they can't just bathe dogs in a regular sink or tub (due to excessive fur that can clog drains), so a successful groomer should have a dog bathtub, one that can hold dogs up to 300 pounds. A rectangular-shaped tub works well, although any shape dog tub will do, and hose attachments are important for rinsing the dogs. Another helpful tub feature is a ramp for larger dogs to climb up into the tub.
Dog Shampoo & Conditioner
The shampoo you use on dogs during their baths can help prevent infections, infestations and even help reduce shedding. Dog shampoo can also help keep a dog's fur healthy. Dog conditioners help prevent matting, moisturize the fur and keep it looking shiny. Have some different types of shampoo and conditioners on hand such as flea bath shampoos, de-shedding shampoos, whitening dog shampoos and silky show pet shampoos.
Dog Fur Dryer
After you have given your customer a bath he will need to be dried. There are a variety of dog grooming dryers from which to choose. One type is a standing dryer that stands on its own so you have both hands free for brushing while drying. If you are opening a mobile dog grooming business you will need a portable dryer.
Dog Ear and Eye Care
Dogs' ears need to be cleaned when you are grooming them. Groomers should have an ear cleaning kit specifically made for dogs to clean the ears, remove any excess fur and keep the ears dry.
Protective eye drops are available to keep shampoo or other products from irritating the dog's eyes.
Dog Dental Kits
Dogs need their teeth brushed too. Dog toothbrushes are available that have three sides. When you brush the dog's teeth (with dog toothpaste on the brush) it will clean all sides of the teeth for you. There are also dog dental kits, which will be good for one-time use. Groomers can use the toothbrush and paste once and throw it out.
- naughty dog image by MichMac from Fotolia.com