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Pricing Questions for Kitties

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  • Pricing Questions for Kitties

    Hi there, I'm in the process of re-structuring my pricing. I don't groom cats and don't know much about the whole process but my employee does. Currently we kinda just guess on what to charge for cats. I have a set price that all cat grooms start at... but then sometimes when she gets the cats in all the owners want are a couple of matts shaved out which takes no time at all usually. I was considering charging a set price for cats by the 1/2 hour. What are everyones thoughts on this? Pros and Cons? How does everyone structure their cat pricing?

    Thanks for the help!

  • #2
    I am currently analyzing some of my prices and I think charging by time for cats is a great idea! I have amazing cats who take 20 min to shave down who I feel guilty charging too high for. Then I have the "timebomb" cats. The ones who give you a few minutes and start going downhill fast with their patience. I have a cat once in awhile that I'll have to groom on two different days because they get too feisty and I have the owner bring them back to finish a few days later. Or the ones you can't finish at all because they go bananas. Or the cats who just get a sani and 3 mats trimmed out. In all of these cases, I think "timed" pricing works well!
    Bulldogs are adorable, with faces like toads that have been sat on.

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    • #3
      We chaarge 50.00 bucks-
      that was in place when I started and Ive kinda stuck by it.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by bulldogmom View Post
        I am currently analyzing some of my prices and I think charging by time for cats is a great idea! I have amazing cats who take 20 min to shave down who I feel guilty charging too high for. Then I have the "timebomb" cats. The ones who give you a few minutes and start going downhill fast with their patience. I have a cat once in awhile that I'll have to groom on two different days because they get too feisty and I have the owner bring them back to finish a few days later. Or the ones you can't finish at all because they go bananas. Or the cats who just get a sani and 3 mats trimmed out. In all of these cases, I think "timed" pricing works well!
        Thank you for your input!! I too feel guilty when it takes her no time to complete a cat, and then feel jipped when a cat takes her double the time to complete and yet she doesn't make what she should.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by ferretlov View Post
          We chaarge 50.00 bucks-
          that was in place when I started and Ive kinda stuck by it.
          per hour? half hour? or base starting price?

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          • #6
            I don't do cats period but the few cats we do, my boss does and she charges $60 no matter what. We called another shop in our area to ask what they charged and it was $75. In the first shop that I worked we never did cats. In the next shop she did. One day the bather was bathing a cat and it went crazy!! Her arms were tore up! She ended up having to pay for a Dr's visit, antibiotics and a wk. off work. That's when I decided I would never groom a cat.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by elizabeth View Post
              per hour? half hour? or base starting price?
              flat-
              Ive done one cat and I as such a new groomer shouldnt have had to do him .
              I walked in and my boss said (on his way out) you have a cat comming in at 12:00 for a shave down.I dont even groom at my job Im the daycare attendant /receptionist.
              I said no not me . and he said I booked them yestersday. I had to shave that cat by myself not knowing cats have thinner skin and all.thank god I always give my cat haircuts so Ive done it before but still, but thats my boss and its another story. but it was just a flat fee.

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              • #8
                We aren't allowed to post prices, so I won't. But you have to keep in mind why cat grooming prices are usually much higher than grooming a dog of roughly the same size. The risk factor.

                People who are in a high risk situation usually command a higher price than those who are not. And grooming cats is a risky undertaking. Cats can really tear you up. They can hurt you really bad, really fast. They can disable you, end your career. And they can kill.

                Because of that, our fee for cat grooming is a bit higher than the one that's already been posted. And personally, I think it should be a little higher.

                For cats that aren't getting clipped or bathed, and aren't matted, we have an hourly rate, broken into 15 minute increments. It's still pretty high. Cat grooming is risky business, and you should make sure you're being compensated for taking that risk.

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                • #9
                  I have a min fee set for my dogs and the my min fee for my cats starts about $15 above that, and that's just for bare bones stuff LOL. When people ask me why they are so much I tell them it's hazard pay. I can get 1 cat done in the fraction of the time I can get a dog in (usually) and typically charge a good $20 more for a basic cat grooming than I would for say, a hand scissor on a min poodle. Not many groom cats in my area and I believe I am the only mobile that covers the area I do that grooms cats. It's a specialized service on top of being mobile and I feel that it's ok to ask people to pay for it. The people who use me regularly for their cats, never think twice about my prices. They are just happy that I come to them to groom their cats!
                  What a caterpillar considers the end of his world, we call a butterfly.

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                  • #10
                    After chatting with my partner today we decided on a price.. but after reading Helly & Myladys posts I'm not sure if we decided on enough! There is no competition in the area for cat grooming, so I could charge whatever but I want to be fair. Can't wait til the cat grooming seminar at Canada Grooms in June.. I really want to start learning.

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                    • #11
                      Yes! I charge more for cats because if something goes wrong it goes really wrong. If you get bit it's pretty much instant antibiotics. The stress is high. Other groomers in town don't do it, so those that do all charge a premium. (Think specialty car shops - if you have a Volvo and go to a foreign car shop it will cost more!) It's not easy and takes skill. I also explain to all owners a few things. 1. Cat skin cuts easily, we try really hard to insure no nicks, but it happens. 2. Cat grooms have a direct relation to how well the cat does. If your cat is great he will look great. If it's tough to work with it may not look so good but will in a couple weeks after starts growing.

                      That said, I still think grooming cats is totally worth it. It can be a major income booster, but know what you are doing. Be careful. I've been grooming cats and dogs for 11 years and I swear some light bulb went off in the past 4-5 years where my ability to handle cats just got better. Out of nowhere it seemed.

                      And for me, if they are horrible, I just call the owner and send them to their vet. I used to work for vets where I could sedate (with owner permission) but now I'm in a regular shop and cannot. Don't mess with it if you think it's not worth it, send them on.

                      Also, I'm going to contact a vet in my area I like, and try to set up a "sedation day" where on my day off I'd be willing to come in and groom whatever they have needs sedated, better than a vet tech can do, for credit towards an account for my pets.

                      Originally posted by Helly View Post
                      We aren't allowed to post prices, so I won't. But you have to keep in mind why cat grooming prices are usually much higher than grooming a dog of roughly the same size. The risk factor.

                      People who are in a high risk situation usually command a higher price than those who are not. And grooming cats is a risky undertaking. Cats can really tear you up. They can hurt you really bad, really fast. They can disable you, end your career. And they can kill.

                      Because of that, our fee for cat grooming is a bit higher than the one that's already been posted. And personally, I think it should be a little higher.

                      For cats that aren't getting clipped or bathed, and aren't matted, we have an hourly rate, broken into 15 minute increments. It's still pretty high. Cat grooming is risky business, and you should make sure you're being compensated for taking that risk.

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                      • #12
                        If anyone asks why I charge more for cats than I do for dogs, I explain that it's to cover my AFLAC. lol. Loss of income and wages due to the dangerous nature of cat bites. They can put you out of work for weeks. I know a groomer who has nerve damage in her hand due to getting bit by a cat.

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                        • #13
                          I was bitten once. The cat hung on my arm by his teeth. My arm was black from shoulder to elbow, I seriously thought I was going to lose it. That's the day I stopped grooming cats. I'm a die hard cat lover but not to groom them!

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                          • #14
                            Cat Starting price

                            I start the pricing at 50.00 then go up from there for shaving cats, Matted cats are more, hard to handle, bath with the cut. For a brushout only I start at 35.00..

                            Hope this helps you out

                            Carol
                            Puppyhut

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Doggystyles View Post
                              If anyone asks why I charge more for cats than I do for dogs, I explain that it's to cover my AFLAC. lol. Loss of income and wages due to the dangerous nature of cat bites. They can put you out of work for weeks. I know a groomer who has nerve damage in her hand due to getting bit by a cat.
                              Yep, I know of a lady who ended up losing her large intestine from a cat bite..Sounds unrelated BUT after she was bitten, the infection went into her bone. When you get infection in your bone you have to go on antibiotics for an extended period of time just so it will reach the bone. Being on antibiotics for as long as she had to be had caused major damage to both of her intestines, before it did any more damage, they had to remove the largest part. Scary stuff..

                              I say if you have to groom cats, charge as high as you can go!

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