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Trying to make in NYC

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  • Trying to make in NYC


    I attended grooming school from October to December, in NYC. I'm getting a slow start. I got a job right away but there just aren't enough dogs at the shop and I'm the only groomer. This place sells puppies, offers daycare, boarding and walking. I only see 4 to 8 dogs a week. I go in 3 days. I really need to make some money. Can you give me some tips to finding new clients?

    I looked for another job but seem to hear the same thing - it's slow right now. Is it just a waiting game?

    I've even tried grooming in my home. What a mess - but it wasn't bad. It was my neighbor's dog from across the hall. A brussells griffon.

    I really want to try mobile dog grooming but I don't think Manhattan is the place for it. Unless somebody knows how to manage it with the parking situation here! Any tips appreciated!


  • #2
    hi maria!

    i'm moving to the city this spring, and currently looking for a grooming job! there are 100's of places ..... has listings of groomers in the city. i wasn't sure if you were saying that you were unhappy where you are working or it was just slow.

    i visited a few salons/daycare .... most seem to have a very small grooming department with just 1-2 groomers. i'm kind of looking for something with more grooming and less daycare.



    • #3
      Hi Maria. If New York is anything like SC then, yes this is the "slow" season. Don't get discouraged though, spring is right around the corner and the flood gates will open! I would suggest that you take what work you can get right now and keep your options open. You can take your resume's to other businesses and call them in a few weeks to see if employment opportunities have changed. The place where you are working now should hopefully start to get busy too. So keep your spirits up, work should be coming!
      SheilaB from SC


      • #4
        Hang in there!

        It is the slow season no matter where you go. If you like the place you work and are comfortable there. Be patient, things will pick up slowly but surely. That is the mistake I made I left a place that treated me well and was teaching me a lot to make more money and it didn't work out well. While money is great it doesn't matter to me if I am unhappy.


        • #5
          I'm in NYC

          I do housecall grooming in Manhattan. I've built an extensive clientele, but it's taken me over three years. I've never worked in a salon, but I know there are job openings sporadically. I've gotten calls myself but was never interested in working in a salon. As for mobile, I don't think it's realistic. Perhaps in the boroughs, but not in Manhattan. You can PM me if you need any help.


          • #6
            Help Needed About NYC Schools

            Hi all of you New Yorkers. Does anyone have any information about the NYC schools. I have been exploring both of the schools that are there and have heard mixed reviews for one and nothing about the other. I am needing to make a decision and choose one but I do need some advice. Please let me know what you know.


            • #7

              Hi Maria,
              It is slow this time of year and the weather for the nothern states has not helped. Spring is almost here and then the rush begins. If you like this place
              try to hang in there a while longer. Being new I know you need cash. Stay
              calm and see what happens by the end of March. If still slow you might want
              to start checking into other salons. Also if you know anyone who is familar
              with the store you might ask if the store is normally busy. Try to get some
              feed back from friends. Keep your chin up.


              • #8
                Hi Maria,
                Welcome! Like others have already said, the Winter months can be a slower time of year, but business should pick up for you soon once Spring is here.


                • #9
                  Hi Maria

                  I think you may be right about Manhattan. The wealthiest people in my city have their dogs groomed in shops on our Rodeo Drive so to speak. Seems the last situation they would want is a grooming mess in their house or another utility vehicle in their drive. And I doubt very many have to worry about being late for tennis while dropping off the dog in the morning. Many grooming shops are now also good boarding schools and day care centers just for those busy shoppers who need that unencumbered with the dog edge for those exhausting shop till you drop SUV hunting and gathering days..That said. I am sure there are a few exceptions in any large population. The first step would be to advertise in a small paper like a community shopper. Ultimately you want to be in the phone book though I can't say I've seen any in-home-mobile groomers in ours. This should change soon as grooming has become more dog owner presentable with matt splitter blade replacement packs. Get business liability insurance- not horribly expensive. Just see how many people have good lighting and a vacuum so you do not have to carry it around yourself. Later see if you can get a few people to buy a small grooming table and keep it there for when you come to groom. Now you only need to bring in some small carry all for your hair dryer, clippers/blades, comb attachments, brushes, combs, splitters, ear and nail stuff, FIRST AID KIT, etc. The catalog you use to order your grooming supplies should have a professional or stylish carrying case though I'm happy with just an Oster back pack myself. Shampoo can be messy so see if your best clients will keep some chez eux for you but carry a small concentrated quantity just in case. Replacing your matt splitter blades in front of the client should be the first thing you do. Prep, shower, fluff dry, and finish. While prepping remember that pulling on the dog's hair with dull matt splitter blades or brushes and combs while the person is watching will probably not get you a second appointment. Remember to carry a lint remover. Manhattan isn't a place I would want to be seen covered in dog hair. Stick with small dogs; Big Hairies will trash a place and make you smell like you need grooming yourself. Don't let them add you on a day they have work scheduled for the home and never groom with mosquitos and humidity. I groomed three Shelties on a deck once one humid evening without Deet. I never went back. Charge nearly what the van people charge because you're a traveling road show with props and scenery to carry. -Zoro


                  • #10
                    Mobile grooming is not practical for Manhattan - you can't fill your water tanks from the fire hydrants. Also, you would definately need commercial plates and finding parking would be a nightmare. If you want to be mobile you need to go to Long Island or New Jersey and find a route. I have lived in Manhattan since the early 70's and when I started grooming I worked at some shops here. There is a lot of dynamics involved with working at shops in this town - and a lot of competition with groomers as well. Most of the shops have a very high rent to pay - especially if their on the avenues. And they want you to be fast - so they will overbook and it's up to you to get the dogs in and out as quickly as possible - they don't care about quality or safety particularly. That's also the reason why they sell puppies and have daycare. I've seen some pretty awful set-ups. I'm not a shop girl and I won't work anywhere where they sell puppies. I started doing housecall a couple of months ago and I get new people weekly - mostly referrals. I charge like the mobile people do. I'm much happier and less stressed and I have great clients - both dogs and their people. You might want to try it - people in the city like the status of having something special and unique. I got that "it's slow right now" line too when I got out of grooming school. None of the shops in the city are ever slow - they can't be because their overhead is too high. That line is a nice way of saying "you don't have the experience". Why not try some of the vets - many of them do grooming. PM me if you need support.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by andy's Mobile View Post
                      And I doubt very many have to worry about being late for tennis while dropping off the dog in the morning. -Zoro

                      Oh, That was dang funny and so was the rest of your post. I love it! Having grown up in Southern California (where the "real" Rodeo drive is), I can soooo picture this!

                      Tammy in Utah
                      Groomers Helper Affiliate