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Groomers know that dog owners need to do some routine maintenance tasks in between grooming appointments to keep their dogs in good shape.

Numerous at-home grooming kits are available to assist in that task, though not all are created equal.

John Vasone, the pet category’s national account manager at ConairPRO agreed about the importance of home grooming.

“For most breeds, a good combing or brushing at least once a week helps keep coats from tangling or matting and removes excess undercoat that can cause hot spots, especially in warm climates,” he said. “Grooming your dog at home is also an excellent bonding opportunity and should become an enjoyable experience that your pet looks forward to having.”

Clipper kits appeal to customers because they include everything required to get the job done.

“One of our best-selling home grooming kits is the EasyClip Clipper/Trimmer Combo,” said Bob Erler, of Andis. “The 12-piece kit has everything needed for the DIY groomer. The adjustable blade clipper is ergonomically balanced. It comes with 6 attachment combs to vary the different cutting lengths required for most dogs. The cordless trimmer runs on two AA batteries and is convenient to reach difficult spots and perfect for face, ears and paws.”

Plus, while groomers try to educate their customers on how to perform at-home grooming tasks, this kit comes with tips. For a pet emergency kit or on-the-go grooming, such as during a road trip, Erler recommended the Trim ‘N Go pocket sized trimmer.

Working With Clients

When it comes to her clients, groomer Darleen Wheelington of Waggin’ Tails in Arkansas said that clients have purchased the least expensive items, hoping to save money, only to discover that they don’t last beyond a few uses.

“There’s so much information out there now and people spend lots of money on their pets, so they want something that works,” she said.

Wheelington said she educates her clients on the tasks to perform at home between appointments, but also recommends that they purchase quality tools. Her go-to clippers have been her top recommended favorites for five years.

“I love Wahl’s clippers,” she said. “The five-in-one blade is all I use now. I have just about every model that Wahl has come out with in the last couple years. It’s faster for me grooming because you’re not changing blades every five minutes. I absolutely love them.”

The Oster Pro Trimmer Pet Grooming Kit includes components for a variety of pet coats. It features tug-free blade, a T-blade for sensitive areas and a quiet motor.
For dogs who are very uncomfortable with the grooming process at home, Scaredy Cut offers a silent clipper kit. The kit includes barber scissors with rounded tips and serrated blades and seven combs.

Beyond clippers and scissors, other packaged grooming items are successful sales for at-home groomers.

“Nail trimmers are Coastal Pet Product’s most popular grooming tools,” said Katie Pusateri, communication manager at Coastal Pet Products.  “Keeping nails properly trimmed is important for the health of the dog and/or cat. The deshedding tools, such as the Safari Shed Magic, Shedding Blade, Self-Cleaning Slicker, Pin Brush and Rubber Curry Brush are in high demand. These specialty tools keep the pet’s coat healthy while preventing hair and allergens from spreading throughout the home.”

Another bestselling line for deshedding includes those from FURminator.

At Conair, the bestselling at-home grooming tools include the ConairPRO Dog nail clippers and slicker brushes.

“Consumers from groomers to first-time dog owners love our memory-gel handles,” said Vasone. “The gel grip is comfortable and provides great control, as the gel forms to each individual grip and makes grooming your pet a positive experience.”

There’s an opportunity for groomers to educate their customers on the importance of at-home grooming, which would help complete the sales of at-home and packaged grooming kits.

“Home grooming actually covers a wide range of interactions with your pet,” said Erler. “Basic brushing and combing is essential to keep coats in top condition and it lets owners check their pet’s skin for unusual bumps, lesions or other skin ailments.”

He said some of his items that are popular are the pin brushes, dematting and deshedding tools.

“Home grooming is not a replacement for professional grooming but is in addition to, to ensure a healthy, happy pet,” he said.

At her salon, Wheelington strives to educate her customers on between-appointment grooming tasks and the products that will help them be successful.

“Depending on the breed, I try to get the owners to realize they’ve got to comb, not just brush,” she said, adding her favorite line of combs is the Greyhound Combs and Brushes.
Vasone emphasized what groomers like Wheelington already know. “Home grooming also prepares your animal for a visit to the grooming salon,” he said. “Having a well-groomed pet will make the groomer’s job easier and will save time and money on the back-end if your pet is free of snarls and tangles.”

Groomers can leverage education of clients on the importance of home grooming into more purchases of their most recommended at-home grooming kits.

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