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Pet Groomer

Pet groomers shampoo, clip and groom dogs, cats and other pets to improve and maintain their hygiene, comfort and appearance.

Also Known As

Cat Groomer, Dog Groomer, Groomer

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used.

Here is how this occupation has been classified over time.

2006 NOC

  • 6483: Pet Groomers and Animal Care Workers

2006 NOC-S

  • G923: Pet Groomers and Animal Care Workers

2011 NOC

  • 6563: Pet groomers and animal care workers

2016 NOC

  • 6563: Pet groomers and animal care workers

2021 NOC

  • 65220: Pet groomers and animal care workers

2023 OaSIS

  • 65220.00: Pet groomers and animal care workers
Updated Mar 31, 2017

Duties vary from one position to another but, in general, pet groomers:

  • answer inquiries from the public
  • schedule appointments and record owner information
  • record each pet’s name, sex, age, breed and disposition, and any information about health problems
  • discuss grooming requirements and desired styles with pet owners
  • select appropriate shampoos and conditioners for different skin and coat types
  • bathe, cut, comb, style and blow dry pets’ coats
  • trim pets’ nails
  • clean pets’ ears
  • suppress anal glands if required
  • maintain grooming equipment.

Pet groomers sometimes use special shampoos to destroy external parasites. They also may order grooming supplies and advise customers regarding pet grooming.

Working Conditions
Updated Mar 31, 2017
  • Strength Required Lift up to 20 kg

This is physically demanding work that may involve:

  • restraining animals
  • lifting and carrying animals and cages weighing up to 20 kilograms
  • repetitive movements that can lead to strain injuries
  • being bitten or scratched.

The work also involves:

  • getting dirty or wet
  • being exposed to unpleasant odours
  • being exposed to parasites such as fleas, ticks, lice and mites.

Pet groomers work indoors. Some evening or weekend work may be required to cater to the needs of pet owners. Self-employed pet groomers often work long hours.

Interests & Abilities

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2006 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Pet Groomers and Animal Care Workers

2006 NOC: 6483

Interest Codes

Interest Codes for This NOC Group

Interest in comparing information to monitor and document animal behaviour, and to prepare food and feed animals, fish and birds at scheduled intervals


Interest in assisting scientists and researchers in conducting laboratory tests with animals; and in using equipment for grooming animals


Interest in handling and nurturing animals when grooming and when assisting breeders; and in training dogs to obey commands and perform specific duties in response to signals

Your Interest Codes

To identify or change your interest codes, complete the Interests Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 

It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective, and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes for this NOC group is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn About Interests


Typical ability expectations for this NOC group
Your abilities

To fill in or change the values for your abilities, complete the Abilities Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Mental Abilities

General Learning Ability

Verbal Ability

Numerical Ability

Visual Abilities

Spatial Perception

Form Perception

Clerical Perception

Physical Abilities

Motor Coordination

Finger Dexterity

Manual Dexterity

Understanding Abilities

A Quick Guide

You are born with abilities that help you process certain types of information and turn it into action. These abilities influence which skills you can learn more easily.

The abilities or aptitudes shown for this NOC group come from the General Aptitude Test Battery (GATB). The GATB measures 9 aptitudes. It groups them into 3 categories: mental, visual, and physical.

The abilities scores range from 1 to 5, with 5 being stronger.

Learn About Abilities

Traits & Skills
Updated Mar 31, 2017

Pet groomers need:

  • physical fitness and good health
  • quick reflexes
  • an interest in animals and an ability to work with them
  • a willingness to clean up after animals
  • artistic interest in grooming styles
  • the ability to maintain control but at the same time be gentle, quiet and patient with animals
  • the ability to deal with pet owners tactfully and gain their trust.

Pet groomers should not be allergic to or afraid of dogs or cats. They should enjoy having clear rules and guidelines for their work and caring for animals.

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Top 10 Skills Employers Are Looking For

Pet groomers and animal care workers

2016 NOC: 6563

This chart shows which job skills are currently in highest demand for this occupational group. It was created using this occupation's 98 most recent Alberta job postings, collected between Nov 16, 2021 and Apr 16, 2024.

Review these skills to learn:

  • Whether or not this occupation matches your skill set
  • What training you may need to get these skills
  • What skills to highlight in your resumé, cover letter, and interview.
Tasks: Nail clipping
Tasks: Ear cleaning
Attention to detail
Tasks: Bathing/shampooing
Construction Specialization: Team player
Construction Specialization: Dependability
Construction Specialization: Reliability
Tasks: Teeth cleaning
Construction Specialization: Effective interpersonal skills
Construction Specialization: Flexibility
Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2017
  • Minimum Education Varies

There are no minimum education requirements for pet groomers. However, pet groomers need:

  • grooming skills
  • an overall understanding of dog and cat behaviour
  • knowledge of different breeds, their characteristics and requirements
  • a basic understanding of pet first aid
  • the ability to recognize when animals may need veterinary care.

Previous animal care experience is an asset.

Some salons provide private lessons or group training for pet groomers and some train newly hired groomers on the job. Prospective pet groomers are strongly advised to discuss their education options with several practicing pet groomers before enrolling in a training program.

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Northern Alberta Institute of Technology
Robertson College - Calgary
Robertson College - Edmonton

To expand or narrow your search for programs related to this occupation, visit Post-Secondary Programs.

Completing a program does not guarantee entrance into an occupation. Before enrolling in an education program, prospective students should look into various sources for education options and employment possibilities. For example, contact associations and employers in this field.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2017
  • Certification Not Regulated

There is currently no provincial legislation regulating this occupation in Alberta.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 31, 2017

Pet groomers work in grooming salons, veterinary clinics and kennels. Some are self-employed and work from their own homes. Those employed in salons may be required to supply their own equipment.

One way to get started in this field is to obtain part-time or full-time work as a bather and dryer during busy times. For example, during the spring and summer or holiday periods, many employers require additional staff.

Advancement opportunities are limited. With experience and small business management skills, pet groomers may become salon managers or start their own businesses.

Industry Concentration

This section shows the industries where the majority of people in this occupation work. The data is based on the 2016 Census.

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups.

In the 6563: Pet groomers and animal care workers occupational group, 82.6% of people work in:

Employment Outlook

Employment outlook is influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • Time of year (for seasonal jobs)
  • Location in Alberta
  • Employment turnover (when people leave existing positions)
  • Occupational growth (when new positions are created)
  • Size of the occupation
  • Trends and events that affect overall employment, especially in the industry or industries from the previous list

In Alberta, the 6563: Pet groomers and animal care workers occupational group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 2.3% from 2019 to 2023. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 96 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

NOC groups often include several related occupations. Although there is labour market data for the larger NOC group, this occupation makes up only a part of that group. It means data for this occupation may be different than the data shown. For example, only some of the new positions to be created will be for this occupation. It also applies to other data for the NOC group such as number of people employed.

Source: 2019-2023 Alberta Regional Occupational Demand Outlook

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Related Alberta Job Postings
Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 31, 2017

Pet groomers’ earnings vary considerably. Experienced groomers may work on commission so their incomes depend on their reputation for good work, their business and customer service skills, and the number of pets they can groom in a day.

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Pet groomers and animal care workers

2016 NOC: 6563
Average Wage
Per Hour
Average Salary
Per Year
Average Hours
Per Week
Average Months on Payroll
Survey Methodology Survey Analysis

2021 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey

NOC 6563 Wage Profile

Unless otherwise noted, the data shown here is for all industries and all regions in Alberta.

All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production), and other forms of compensation.

To see the full survey data for this NOC group, visit the wage profile.

Other wage sources
To make an informed wage and salary decision, research other wage sources [pdf] to supplement this data.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median

Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $15.00 $23.00 $16.45 $15.32
Overall $15.00 $26.25 $17.83 $16.20
Top $15.00 $31.25 $20.17 $18.00

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

Pay brackets for hourly wages

  • Starting pay: average pay offered for entry-level positions
  • Overall pay: average pay across all employees in this occupation
  • Top pay: average pay offered to top-paid employees

Industry Information

Professional, Scientific & Technical Services
Other Services (Repair, Personal Services and Related)

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years
Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties
Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months
Vacancy Rate
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Personal and Food Services

Updated Mar 31, 2017. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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