Regardless of how proficient you may have become at grooming your pet dog or no matter how complete your pet grooming kit is, chances are you will still need the services of a professional dog groomer. While most of us would rather bring our pets to our favorite dog grooming salon, there are some folks who prefer having the groomer come to them. These are what we call mobile dog groomers. Since these professional groomers come to your house, their services are naturally more expensive. But the real question is, how much will you pay for mobile dog grooming?
Advantages of Mobile Dog Grooming
Before we take a look at how much it will cost you to avail of a mobile dog grooming service, let us first try to understand why you should avail of such a service.
One of the most important advantages of getting a mobile dog groomer is the convenience it gives you. They will be the ones who will come to your place and take good care of your dog. There’s no need to make adjustments to your own schedule since the grooming will occur right in your home or in the mobile grooming van parked right outside your property. You will never have to worry about keeping your pet safe and comfy on a crate while going to the salon. You can continue with your normal activities of daily living. Best of all, some groomers can accommodate your schedule so you’ll be on top of things. In the case of grooming salons, it is you who will have to adjust to their schedule and not the other way around.
- Less Stressful for Pet
Not all pets like traveling. Some can get motion sickness while others can experience severe anxiety. A really anxious dog will even be more anxious once the grooming is initiated at the salon. On the other hand, if you get a mobile dog groomer, your dog will still be within its own ‘territory’. It will feel more at ease and more relaxed. And even if it doesn’t like to be groomed inside the mobile dog grooming van, you can always invite the groomer inside your house and in the room where your dog is most comfortable with.
- Undivided Attention
When you go to a pet grooming salon, you and your dog are not the only clients the groomers have to serve. There are plenty more. Sometimes, while the groomer is already performing a particular service on your dog, he or she can get distracted by phone calls, other clients asking for something, or even the innate behavior of other dogs being groomed by other groomers. The point is that the groomer’s attention may not only be focused on your dog, but also the others in the salon. Mobile dog groomers, on the other hand, work on only one dog at a time. There are no distractions (unless you invite him or her inside the house where he or she will be grooming your dog). It’s just the pet groomer and your dog.
Drawbacks of Mobile Dog Grooming
Like everything else, mobile dog grooming has its own set of disadvantages, too.
Compared to a pet grooming salon that may have a team of pet groomers, a mobile grooming unit will usually be handled by at most two individuals. One will do the grooming while the other will provide assistance. On the average a mobile dog groomer can spend about 2 to 3 hours on a single pet; sometimes shorter, other times longer depending on the nature of the grooming. You can also factor the travel time that the groomer will need to get to your place and you’re looking at a mobile dog groomer who can accommodate only about 4 to 5 clients per day. You may want to have your dog groomed now, but if the groomer is already fully booked, then you’ve got to book for the next available slot.
It is okay if you live in the city as accessibility may not really be an issue. But what if you live in the countryside where the only mode of transportation that is possible is through 4x4s and other off-roaders? It will be a little bit more challenging for the groomer to reach your place. Of course, this is an exaggeration, but you do get the point. There are also gated communities wherein the association strictly forbids groomers and other similar service providers into these exclusive enclaves.
One of the most obvious drawbacks of mobile dog grooming is that it is a little bit more expensive than what pet grooming salons will typically charge you. But if you’re going to factor your time, effort, and the stress that the travel time can bring to your dog, then perhaps this premium price is well worth it. This is not to mention the fuel you will need to put into your car or even the risk of meeting an accident as you travel to and from the grooming salon. Generally speaking, mobile dog groomers can charge you anywhere from $30 to $50 for the low-end market and a minimum of $70 for those in the higher end. There are factors that can play into the determination of the cost of mobile dog grooming, but we’ll get to that in the next section. In addition to these rates, mobile dog groomers typically charge you an additional $10 to $15 as a convenience fee.
Factors that May Affect the Cost of Mobile Dog Grooming
There are no standards when it comes to the cost of mobile dog grooming. The prices are usually dictated by a number of factors that typically include the breed of the dog, its temperament, the location of both the groomer and the client, the different services offered, and the frequency of using such services.
Some breeds of dogs are a breeze to groom. For example, grooming a Boxer, Miniature Pinscher, or even a Vizla or Weimaraner is relatively easy because of their relatively short hair. But if you have a Poodle, Bichon Frise, Afghan Hound, or even a Portuguese Water Dog, know that these will require very extensive – and costly – grooming services. Now, if your dog happens to be a Komondor or even a Puli, then expect the price of mobile dog grooming to be really steep. Grooming these breeds of dogs require a minimum of 3 hours. And if you have a mobile dog groomer that charges $75 for dogs with easy coats, then you may be looking at an addition $20 to $40 per hour on top of the base charge.
- Dog’s Temperament
Most dogs don’t really like the idea of grooming, especially when given a bath or when their nails are being trimmed. Some don’t even like having their coat clipped. As such, they may show aggression during these episodes of grooming that the professional groomer may be wary of getting bitten by the dog. It is for this reason that some groomers may charge you an extra if he or she deems that your dog has aggression issues. The same is true if your dog requires some special care that is not normally found in other dogs.
Mobile dog groomers located in metropolitan areas that have a high cost of living typically charge higher rates than those found in places with lower cost of living. For example, residents in Palo Alto, California will usually be paying more for these mobile dog grooming services than those from Modesto since the cost of living in the former is higher than that of Modesto. Of course, other factors can still have an impact on the cost.
- Grooming Services Offered
Some mobile dog groomers offer a variety of grooming packages or a la carte services that fit right in your budget. For example, standard nail care can set you back by around $25 to $30. But if you bundle it with another grooming service, then this can be reduced to just $15 to $20. The same is true for toothbrushing and ear cleaning.
When it comes to tooth scraping or the removal of dental plaques from the dog’s teeth, you can choose to go with anesthesia or without. Just remember that tooth scraping with anesthesia will usually set you back by an additional $150 to $250. There are also those groomers who provide a complete package that already includes wash, anal gland expression, nail-trimming, dental care, ear-cleaning, and even haircut.
More like a rewards system, some mobile dog groomers provide discounts to their loyal patrons. Some may offer a 5% discount on their next grooming appointment while others prefer giving out a free grooming session with a certain number of accumulated sessions. For example, they may offer a 5+1 deal wherein you will have the 6th grooming session for your dog absolutely free.
Mobile dog grooming does have its pluses and minuses. But if you’re going to look closely at its cost and weigh-in the advantages, you’d definitely want to avail of such a service for your dog rather than you bringing it to the pet grooming salon.