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How Much Do You Tip Dog Groomers?

If you’re a relatively new dog owner, then you might be preparing to take your pup to the groomers for the first time.

Before that dog grooming appointment, you might be wondering what the proper etiquette is in regards to tipping groomers.

Are you supposed to tip a dog groomer? And if so, how much is an appropriate tip amount for a dog groomer?

Yes, it is customary to tip a dog groomer, just like how you tip the hairdresser after your hair is cut.

The standard tipping amount for dog groomer is 10% to 20% tip.

Why Should You Tip The Dog Groomer?

Are you on the fence about if you should really tip your dog groomer when you pick up your pup?

Let us give you some of the reasons why tipping dog groomers is a good idea for you (and your doggo).

The Groomer Doesn’t Get 100% Of The Service Cost

It may surprise you to learn that when you pay to have your dog groomed, that full cost does not go directly to the groomer.

In fact, the groomer only earns around 40% to 50% of that fee as a commission.

So, that’s a lot like hairdressers in a salon.

This means that groomers actually rely on tips to earn a decent living wage from their jobs.

It’s A Skilled Service

Can you groom your dog on your own as well as the groomer?

Probably not, otherwise you’d just do it yourself.

So, when you tip you are recognizing this fact – that the groomer has a special skill that you value.

Plus, it’s something that you want done right.


What You Should Expect From Groomers

When you drop your dog off for grooming, you’re doing so with a set of expectations. And, you need those expectations met in order to feel comfortable tipping.

If you’re getting ready to take your dog to the groomer’s for the first time, then you might not know what to expect.

Here’s our tips for that.

  • You expect your dog to be treated well.
  • You expect a safe and clean environment for your dog.
  • You expect the appointment to take a reasonable amount of time.
  • You expect the groomer to listen and do what you request.

To give you some ideas on how your pup should be treated when you drop him off, he should have his own kennel while waiting his turn and not be put in with other doggos.

In regards to length of appointment time and what is reasonable, when you make the appointment just ask the groomer how long it will take. And then it should not take longer than that.

What Are Valid Reasons To Not Tip A Dog Groomer?

While we think that you should definitely tip your dog groomer, there are instances where you should either lower the tip amount or not tip at all.

Here are some valid scenarios for that:

  • The groomer didn’t treat your dog well.
  • The appointment took considerably longer than expected.
  • The groomer did not do what you requested.

At the end of the day, you are tipping for good service and if you didn’t get it, then it’s reasonable to not tip as much (or at all).

When Should You Tip The Dog Groomer Extra Money?

There are some instances when you really should tip your groomer more than the standard tipping percentage.

Here are a few scenarios when that may occur for you:

  • Your dog bites the groomer.
  • Your dog sheds – a lot…really excessive shedding.
  • Your dog poops…or already has poop stuck to his furry butt.
  • Your dog won’t, or can’t, stand for the grooming (overweight, injured, or older dog).
  • Your dog’s fur is really matted and hard to deal with.
  • Your dog gets sick (vomits) during the grooming.
  • It’s the holiday season!

As you can see, when the groomer has to go above and beyond, or deal with something unexpected, then you should definitely tip more.

You should also tip your groomer extra during the holiday season.

Should You Tip A Dog Groomer At Petsmart And Petco?

If you take your dog to Petsmart or Petco for grooming instead of a dedicated groomer, then you might be wondering about the tipping etiquette here.

Here’s the thing – it doesn’t matter where they work, the groomer is still providing a service and you should tip for a service.

So yes, you should tip a dog groomer at Petsmart and Petco.

And you should tip the groomer directly with cash instead of giving the money to someone else in the store.

Do You Tip A Self-Employed Dog Groomer?

Since a self-employed dog groomer is technically the business owner, you might be wondering if you’re still supposed to tip them.

Here’s the thing – it doesn’t matter if the groomer is self-employed because the groomer is still providing a service and you should tip for a service.

Just because the groomer is self-employed doesn’t mean that they don’t need the tip (or earn it by grooming your dog).

In fact, the self-employed groomer has more expenses and doesn’t get any benefits (like health insurance) like the groomers who work for someone else.

So yes, tip your dog groomer even if she is self-employed.

Final Word

Though you might be confused about the tipping etiquette, you should almost always tip your dog groomer.

There are a few scenarios where you should reduce your tip amount, or maybe not even tip at all.

Likewise, there are some scenarios where you should tip the dog groomer a higher percentage than normal.

What percent should you tip a dog groomer? Anywhere between 10% tip to 20% tip, depending on how you feel about the service you received.

image license: Freepik 1, 2

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National Canine Research Association of America