We know what you’re thinking! Why does anyone need an entire guide on finding the right dog groomer, especially in L.A.?! It sounds a bit over the top but let us assure you, there’s more to it than you’d think! A good, no, a great groomer provides you with the following:
- A clean, confident, and well-groomed dog
- Notice of anything unusual—physically or behaviorally
- An outlet for your pet to receive socialization and love
- Peace of mind
There are endless options for groomers in Los Angeles, so the question now becomes, “how do you narrow it down?” There are certain tips to help you choose the absolute best groomer, and, let’s face it, your dog deserves THE BEST.
The following paw-some guide names some of L.A.’s finest groomers. Additionally, it will give you useful tips to find your purrfect groomer!
What to Look for in a Groomer in Los Angeles:
No matter where you may live, it is almost guaranteed that there are endless possibilities nearby for grooming services. You will likely be leaving your pet with them for a while, so you’ll want to be sure it is a reputable grooming service. Always do your due diligence when it comes to your furry loved ones just as you would any other member of the family. Always ask questions, such as, if the groomer(s) are properly educated and if anyone on-site has any medical training.
Check out how clean the place is. Keep in mind, however, that they’re dealing with animals, so a bit of messiness is to be expected. You should be making sure it is not excessive. Above all else, trust your instincts. If your gut is saying no, move on to the next place!
Additional Questions to Ask:
- Does the groomer have any credentials? While a license isn’t a requirement, your groomer should have received proper training at a recognized grooming school or have at least 2 years of professional grooming experience.
- What documentation is needed? Shot records, proof of ownership? (If they don’t at least require rabies and bordetella, run!)
- Where are the pets kept while awaiting services? Do they use cages/kennels? Are the pets always within full view of at least one member of staff? Ask if you can see the ‘waiting area’.
- How do they deal with fearful, anxious, or nervous pets? What if they are aggressive? Are there certain safety procedures taken? Should I bring a muzzle?
- Do they use heated dryers? These can be dangerous, especially when left unattended and particularly when it comes to brachycephalic (short-nosed) breeds.
- Can I tour the salon/spa? This one is key. Unless a valid reason is provided, you should be able to see the facility where you will be leaving your beloved pet.
Why Finding the Right Dog Groomer is So Important:
You may think that a less than perfect haircut is the worst that can happen at the groomers, but, sadly, you would be mistaken. Due to ineptitude, ignorance, or just plain carelessness, there have been quite a few incidents that culminated in a dog being injured or worse. A good groomer is much more than just a doggy hairdresser! They should also have some medical knowledge, and the ability to determine if something is wrong.
Observe your dogs’ demeanor: When you drop off or pick up your pet for his initial visit, pay close attention to his behavior. Was he previously friendly and excited but now he seems skittish, avoiding the staff? If things seem off, don’t be afraid to respectfully ask the groomer how things went. Your dogs’ overall condition upon pickup: Accidents and mistakes happen, it’s part of being human. However, if you notice an issue that was not explained or brought up when you retrieved your dog, respectfully confront the groomer for answers. If it happens more than once without explanation, it may be time to find a new groomer.
Our Top 6 Picks for the Best L.A. Groomers:
How They Made the List:
First, safety should definitely be a number one priority to be closely followed by experience and talent. Second, the grooming company needed to have professional, skilled, and experienced groomers. Third, though a few less than flattering reviews are inevitable and a part of business, the vast majority of reviews had to be positive.
6. GROOM – Dog Care with Love:
GROOM most certainly lives up to its motto, it truly does offer dog care with a whole lotta love. From their adorable doggy apparel to their full-service dog spa, GROOM is one of the best in West Hollywood. One look at their 5-star rating on Google, Facebook, and Yelp, tells you all you need to know about the experts at this fantastic place. The owner, Toni Kotite, and her wonderful staff make every visit a special one.
5. Blue Pooch:
One of the more unusual grooming services in L.A., the Blue Pooch, is a Japanese style service. They’re also a paw-some doggy daycare! They offer styles that mimic the look of cute stuffed animals and rarely resort to shaving. The fluffier the better. It is a drop-off service so plan on leaving Fido for at least 2 to 3 hours. The only downside to this standout pet spa is that they do not offer hair-cut only services.
4. Paws and Effect:
With their highly trained and exceptionally talented team of pet stylists, Paws and Effect has quickly gained in popularity in and around the Santa Monica area. They offer a serene experience in a clean and tranquil environment, even using aromatherapy to keep your pooch calm throughout the visit. They have a diverse menu of services including what is called the ‘Glamour Effect.’ It entails Fido being adorned in your choice of jewels or braids, as well as, optional (but totally necessary!) vibrant fur coloring for added sass or just to cover up some grey. And don’t forget the matching nail polish!
3. Bark Williams:
One of Santa Monica’s finest pet spas and boutiques, Bark Williams, is a family-owned and operated premier full-service and self-wash grooming service. They promote, and use, only all-natural products to cater to all of your precious pup’s lifestyle needs. Their unique boutique carries a wide array of luxury items, accessories, human-grade, raw food for cats and dogs, and all of the everyday essentials you didn’t know your pooch needed.
2. Healthy Spot:
A completely full-service pet salon with an eclectic range of pet products and services on offer. Centered around the overall healthfulness of pets, the Healthy Spot was founded after the infamous pet food recall of 2007. Now they offer a full-service pet spa alongside their massive range of eco-friendly pet food, products, and supplies. This is a groomer that your dog will actually want to visit.
1. The Pet Wash:
Situated right in the heart of trendy El Segundo, The Pet Wash is both a self-service and grooming pet spa. They have excellent prices, are 100% cage-free, and offer a full line of all-natural flea and tick control, as well as meat-based and grain-free pet food and treats. Most pet owners see their dogs (and cats) as their children. We love them, care for them, and, of course, we want to keep them safe. Although grooming is not exactly a ‘dangerous activity’, you need to be sure that your pet is being treated, and cared for, properly. Asking a few vital questions, asking for client referrals; these are super easy actions to take to ensure your pet will be well-cared for when you can’t be there. Take care in choosing the right groomer, one who will love your dog, treat him right, while also making him look paw-sitively fabulous!