Dog Groomer Salary

Many people are finding second careers in the pet care industry, most of which becoming dog groomers and dog trainers. It is important to know what the average dog groomer salary is in the US, and where most of the opportunities can be found.

The obvious appeal is the ability to work with animals on a daily basis. Often times it is not enough to just work and care for animals, it is important to make a comfortable living as well. Read on to find out how much potential there really is.

average dog groomer salary

How Much Do Pet Groomers Make?

According to an independent study done by, the average dog groomer salary in the United States is $29,848. This means that some dog groomers make more, and some make less. On the low end you have your introductory groomers making roughly $17,000, and on your high end you have your experienced, established dog groomers making closer to $50,000 per year.

It is important to note that these numbers are for the average dog groomer salary and they don’t include tips and bonuses which can be a significant portion of a dog groomers income. Statistics show that established groomers can make up to an additional $4.26 per hour in tips alone ($8,860.08 per year when working 40 hours per week).

Understanding the Different Pay Structures

As a dog groomer, you will come across two different pay structures and it is important to understand the benefits of both. Traditionally, grooming salons in the US use a commissioned structure of pay. These businesses pay their dog groomers a commission per dog they complete. The commission usually ranges from 30% to 60%, with the average being 50%.

It is important to note that the percentage of the commission alone doesn’t determine how much you will make. There are some salons paying out 30% commissions and their groomers are making $15 per hour, whereas, another salon pays 50% and their groomers are making $12 per hour. The other factors that should be acknowledged are the average groom cost, how long each groom takes, and if you will be required to bath your own dogs or have a bather assist you.

The second structure, which is becoming more popular with grooming salons, pays a base wage or salary to their dog groomers. At these salons, the average dog groomer salary is usually based on speed and efficiency. Such a pay structure is usually found at salons that are busier. Because of this, they are more interested in having stable dog groomers and they can afford to pay you even on slower days. The benefit to you is a stable, consistent income that doesn’t fluctuate based on seasonality.

How to Become A Dog Groomer

If you would like to become a dog groomer, the best place to start is by attending a dog grooming school. The benefits of this include the ability to receive comprehensive, hands-on education, and a certificate that is recognized in your industry. Most hands-on schools also help with job placement and already have a network of businesses that hire their graduates. If you’d like to learn more about how to become a dog groomer, give us a call at (636)489-5356 or schedule a school visit online!