Dog Grooming Courses

By Mariza Halliday - Last update

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What is Dog Grooming?

Grooming your dog is a healthy activity and essential for their health and welfare. Good and consistent grooming can help you to discover any health issues an animal may have in its early stages and allow for immediate treatment.

A professional grooming session typically consists of the dog being brushed, bathed, and dried, as well as trimmed or clipped with clean, sanitized brushes and clipper blades. Groomers brush or comb out mats before the bath, making it easier to lather the dog with shampoo.

What 3rd level courses are available?

Universities and colleges in Ireland are offering Dog Grooming courses in the following subject areas:

  • Dog Grooming – Learn how to groom your dog, comb out knots, bathe, cut nails, check ears, teeth, when to start to groom your puppy, as well as planning visits to your vet regarding health issues or vaccinations.
  • Dog Grooming and Dog Maintenance – Learn how to care for your four-legged friends, so that they will be looking and feeling their best. This practical hands-on course will teach you tips and tricks on home maintenance and general care of your dog.
  • Diploma in Dog Grooming – An introduction to concepts and facts that are crucial to any groomer.
  • Dog Grooming to Business Pathway – Learn about the care requirements of dogs, and all about their health.
  • Advanced Certificate in Dog Grooming – A study of dog grooming tools, hydrobath, puppy wash, and grooming.
  • Advanced Diploma in Dog Grooming Techniques – The course offers a firm understanding of animal safety and care during grooming, common skin diseases, grooming equipment, and tools, how to approach grooming, different grooming styles, and learning hygiene regulations.
  • Specialist Diploma Training Course In Dog Grooming – This course will enable you to learn how to become a professional Dog Groomer. You will learn about the different breeds and about the grooming techniques required in approaching the different types.
  • Certificate in Dog and Pet Grooming – This course covers animal handling, health, and safety, caring for the skin and coat, preparing for a showing, and more.

Studying Dog Grooming in college

Many Dog Grooming courses take place over 1 year to 4 years depending on the course and modules selected. There are also part-time courses and night courses available so you can be sure to fit in your studies no matter what your schedule is like.

Courses will cover theory work through lectures, assignments, tutorials, and taught modules. Assessments will take place continuously with written examinations and practical assignments combined to achieve a qualification. You could also consider work experience or a work shadow in the industry. Practical experience is considered to be of prime importance and you need to build this up before progressing in the job.

Relevant work experience is a good way of demonstrating a genuine interest in the field and is regarded favorably by employers. This can include caring for pets or working in dog kennels, on farms, or in veterinary practice for a sustained period.

Work Experience will not only allow you to obtain a deeper knowledge and understanding of the industry, but it will also give you a chance to do some essential networking with other industry professionals and gain valuable contacts for the future.

Career options

After completing a course in Dog Grooming you will be able to get started in a career that uses specific knowledge of animal care and hygiene.

As a groomer, you will get to work with animals every day and will work within strict welfare regulations and you will be responsible for making sure the highest standards of care and welfare are met for them.

Working hours will depend on whether you are employed by a company with set business hours or if you are contracted to various facilities or companies. The hours are usually full-time and include some early morning, late-night, weekend, and bank holidays working on a rota basis depending on the needs of clients and/or the hours of the business.

The work can be physically demanding and tiring, and you’ll need a high level of concentration and attention to detail.

Related jobs include:

  • Pet Groomer
  • Animal physiotherapist
  • Animal technician
  • Animal nutritionist
  • Nature conservation officer
  • Zookeeper
  • Zoologist
  • Charity officer
  • Ecologist
  • Environmental consultant
  • Field trials officer
  • Sales executive
  • Science writer
  • Veterinary nurse
  • Volunteer coordinator

Further study

After completing a course in Dog Grooming you may choose to pursue further study in a specialist field to increase your knowledge base and skillset. Postgraduate study can also be used as a means to change career focus or to gain professional qualifications required to practice in certain career areas such as animal behavior/management, animal care, and welfare, animal management, or animal science.


Is dog grooming necessary?

For dogs and cats, proper hair hygiene is essential as a failure to groom pets regularly can have serious health consequences.

Good groomers don’t just cut for beauty; they look for signs of trouble beneath the furry surface. A groomer may discover health issues before you know they exist, including cysts, bad skin conditions, and ear infections—all of which can hide under fur.

What skills could be helpful for a career in Dog Grooming?

For a successful career in Dog Grooming, you should have a love of animals and a willingness to care for them, good attention to detail, and high levels of concentration. You should have a responsible attitude and an understanding of the need for confidentiality, an awareness of the ethical issues surrounding this work, and good communication skills, as it’s often necessary to consult with a variety of professionals.

Other general skills are a willingness to work as part of a team and a good standard of physical fitness as you will be required to lift and move animals of all shapes and sizes safely and carefully.

Where can I study Dog Grooming?

Explore your options here

Did You Know?

· As a rule of thumb, your dog should be groomed every six to eight weeks, but ask your groomer if you aren’t sure.

· Bathe your dog once a month, but no more than twice a month to avoid skin issues. Clean your dog’s ears regularly, once every two weeks, with a natural ear-cleaning product and a soft towel. Double-coated breeds and breeds with long hair should be brushed several times a week to cut down on shedding and uncomfortable tangles.

· Fur-bearing breeds have a double coat, made up of a soft undercoat and a coarser topcoat. These breeds like Golden Retrievers, Huskies, Newfoundlands, and Pomeranians, shed their undercoat to regulate their body temperature.

· Hair-bearing breeds like Yorkies, Shih Tzus, Poodles, and Bichons have a single coat that lacks an undercoat. Their coat continues to grow and they do not shed.

· Regular nail trimming will maintain a healthy foot structure and stop the nail quick (vein) from growing too long. 

Mariza Halliday

Animal First Aid Courses
Audio and Music Production


  1. Lindsay Crockford 25th June 2023 at 6:57 pm

    Hi just making an enquiry about a dog grooming course

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