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Finally Starting my own business... ANY advise is appreciated (and needed!!!)

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  • Finally Starting my own business... ANY advise is appreciated (and needed!!!)

    Okay I live in a little rural town where everyone knows everyone, everyone has a dog, and the nearest groomer is 40 minutes away. I have randomly groomed-around for quite a while, and finally decided to start a business!!! So im going to list off everything I have, and everything i still plan to buy. PLEASE let me know if youd make any changes or additions and anny and alll hints/tips to running my salon are helpful! Thanks!

    Stuff I have...
    Oster Clippers
    full set of clipper blades/combs
    grooming table with grooming arm
    various sized muzzles
    various kennel leads
    various nail trimmers
    combs
    undercoat rake
    dematting blade
    hair dryer
    large crates
    binder containing price lists and pictures of all the cuts i know how to do (so customers can have visual examples)
    customer records including customer info, dog info, past services, and liability forms)

    Stuff I plan to get
    Shampoo (CLUELESS!!! Our local oet stores cary SPA, four paws, gold metal, mane and tail, and crazy dog. Mane and tail is cheapest, and that is the extent of my knowledge when it comes to shampoo! Do you dilute them or use em straight out of the bottle?)
    Flea/tick shampoo
    Medicated soothing shampoo(we have some sensitive folks. not sure about brand.)
    conditioner (is this a requirement? or just personal preference?)
    grooming loops/nooses (are these really required? or can i just use these $1 kennel slip-leads that i had planned on using?)
    scissors (I DONT need all the fancy high priced ones.. wats a good variety to have on hand? and will people scissors work if they are cheaper?)

    THanks a bunch for ANY info you can give me regarding the above info OR any hints/tips for starting my business!!

  • #2
    no requrements

    at present, since there is no lisencing or regulations, you can used what ever you want. but I get the feeling you want to be professional and do what is best for the pets in your care. so. on the business side, make sure you are legally able to groom in your home. get insurance. cant stress that enough, you need insurance. forming a corporation is a good idea, but not necessary to start. and advertise. business cards are a must. carry them always and hand them out often, leave them with anyone and everyone.
    now, your list looks pretty good. double up on your equipment as soon as you can, the last thing you want to happen is to drop your clipper or shears and not have a backup. as far as shampoo, dont buy too much of anything until your sure its what you want to use. check out petedge and ryans, they have great stuff that is not too much. conditioner is not necessary for every pet, but can be invaluable on others. if you know what breeds you will see most, research whats best for them. you can and probably will change the things you use as you go along. people shears are fine, I had a pair that were my favorite for a couple years. keep yourself open to advise, ask questions, get some books (notes is awesome), and videos. get to seminars and shows if you can. good luck.

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    • #3
      What kind of educational material do you have access to besides this board? I would STRONGLY suggest you get Notes from the Grooming Table........amazing book.....and maybe invest in some educational DVD's. There are a lot of good tutorial DVD's out there (Jody Murphy is great) and there are also some online pet grooming courses if you want to get a more formalized education w/out having to travel.. You should also look into taking a Pet First Aid and CPR course.

      It kinda worries me that you are going to open a grooming business w/out having much (if any) working experience, training or formal education (I am assuming this, forgive me if I am incorrect).

      Oh yeah, you should definately have some grooming loops and a grooming arm. A really great tool is the Groomers Helper. You can do a search and find TONS of info on it and decide if you think it is something that would work for you.
      SheilaB from SC

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      • #4
        Business insurance.

        And, if you don't have it already, health insurance.

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        • #5
          A MENTOR!!!!!

          With no training (formal or otherwise) you'll need some one to help you (even if only online).

          I second having business insurance with professional liability! This could mean the difference between being successful or bankrupt.

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          • #6
            I second the training!!! Too many people are picking up scissors and calling themselves groomers nowadays. Even an online course (Nash?) will help you quite a bit with knowing what you are doing. When you are using sharp instruments around wiggly animals you need to know what are the safest methods to use! To me that's more important than making the dog look good. Do you require vaccinations? Do you disinfect your equipment? All things to think about!
            There are 3 different kinds of people in this world: Dog people, cat people, and rational people who don't have a problem liking two things at the same time.

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