Grooming is an important part of your dog’s health care routine. If you’re like most people, however, then you know next to nothing about how to properly groom your dog. Fortunately, the best dog grooming books for beginners are full of tips and advice for beginning and advanced groomers.
Dog grooming varies depending on the type of dog that you have. Dogs with long or curly hair tend to need more grooming than dogs with short, straight fur. Likewise, dogs with double coats, wiry coats and other unique coats may require more grooming than other breeds.
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If you've got a lot of grooming questions, the best dog grooming books for beginners can be a big help. You can find books that are breed specific or coat specific. You can also find books written by experts that offer tips and tricks they've learned through their extensive experience with canines.
20 Best Dog Grooming Books
for beginning and advanced groomers
Top 5 Best Dog Grooming Books (General)
1 Notes from the Grooming Table
by Melissa Verplank (2004)
Topping our list of the best dog grooming books is this easy to read book written by a groomer with 20 years of experience. Including tips on cutting the various types of fur, scissoring technique, various grooming tools, grooming feet, and trimming, this book comes highly rated.
Designed for groomers of all skill level, this book features grooming skills that can be used for every breed. With both simple illustrations and easy to follow instructions, this 495-page book belongs on every dog groomers bookshelf.
2 A Comprehensive Manual for Individualized Grooming
by Efroim Gurman and Yanina Ruda (2011)
A comprehensive grooming manual put together by two authors and numerous contributors, this is a shorter book than Verplank’s, but offers unique tips to groomers. Addressing grooming techniques for cats and dogs, this book not only covers technique but also how to fix flaws in the coat.
Step by step instructions and detailed illustrations are easy to follow and cover more than 200 breeds. A highly lauded book, this one is ideal for the perfectionist, the newcomer to grooming and the experienced professional.
3 All-Breed Dog Grooming
by Panel of Credentialed Grooming Experts (2011)
Written by a team of expert groomers, this 272-page grooming manual covers 164 dog breeds recognized by the AKC and CKC. A book of decent length, this edition comes with photographs, illustrations, and step by step instructions on grooming techniques.
Having been referenced for over 20 years by professional groomers, this book was recently revised and includes modern tools and standards. Also covered by this book are eliminating matting, which tools to use when, how to eliminate odor, and how to properly nourish a dog’s coat.
4 The Stone Guide to Dog Grooming for All Breeds Hardcover
by Ben Stone and Pearl Stone (1981)
From the history of dog grooming to the unique groomer tricks of the trade, this book also covers the ins and outs of setting up a professional grooming business. Hundreds of photos, charts, and drawings offer guides for the more visual learner while the easy to follow instructions provide step by step guidance.
5 All Breed Dog Grooming Guide – 4th Edition
by Sam Kohl (2012)
Kohl’s All Breed Dog Grooming Guide is a spiral bound easy to reference grooming guide. Covering 193 breeds recognized by the AKC, this is a book often referenced by grooming programs across the country.
Easily read, this is one of the best dog grooming books because it covers basic and advanced grooming techniques as well as control and handling methods for easy grooming. Raved about by groomers for its incredible attention to detail, this book is a great guide for anyone with interest in grooming from the newbie to the pro.
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Top 5 Best Dog Grooming Books for Beginners
6 Introduction to the Foundations of Dog Grooming
by Karla Addington-Smith (2010)
This 17-chapter spiral bound book is perfect for the newcomer to grooming. With 112 pages, this book doubles as a workbook with activity sheets included and an answer key for reference. The perfect introduction to grooming, chapters include removing mats, ear cleaning, nail clipping, brushing, de-shedding, paw care, bathing, and drying.
Each chapter is filled with high-quality pictures, pertinent tools for each area of care, and tips for safety and handling. Written by a groomer with 35 years of experience, this is one of the best dog grooming books that provides the perfect prep for any groomer to be.
7 Dog Grooming for Dummies
by Margaret H. Bonham (2006)
Another book in the “for Dummies” series, this 388-page reference book provides easy to follow steps for any dog lover to follow. Designed for newcomers to grooming this is one of the best dog grooming books as it is comprehensive enough for the more experienced hand.
Packed with grooming tips for all types of dog coat, Bonham provides an online cheat sheet, simple explanations, and navigational aids. Chapters include how to prepare your dog to be groomed, how to care for ears/nails/teeth, proper use of various grooming tools and even how to prepare a dog for the show ring!
8 DIY Dog Grooming, From Puppy Cuts to Best in Show: Everything You Need to Know, Step by Step
by Jorge Bendersky (2014)
Catered to the dog owner who wants to learn how to groom their dog at home, this 163-page book features plenty of photos and simple instructions. Covering everything from bathing to brushing, this book also emphasizes the importance of helping your dog to relax.
In addition to basic tips and tricks, Bendersky provides creative suggestions for grooming even the most difficult dog. With practical solutions for everyday problems like mud in the coat to the more challenging topic of flea infestations.
9 Dog Grooming Simplified
by Jodi Murphy (2014)
An easy, straight to the point guide, Murphy’s book is an easy to reference spiral bound guide. Written by a master pet stylist, this 496-page book offers more than 400 high-quality photos and covers 190 AKC breeds.
The perfect reference manual for new groomers, this is one of the best dog grooming books to keep on the shelf for the more seasoned groomer too. Murphy provides unique resources including a color chart overlay with directions on blade lengths recommended for each breed for the ideal trim and coat appearance.
10 The Mutt Styling Guide
by Chrissy Thompson (2005)
251 pages with 64 makeover sessions covered in 293 illustrations, this book covers the more unique needs of mixed breed dogs. A common question mark for groomers of all experience levels, mixed breeds can be challenging to cut and trim at best.
This spiral bound reference includes the more basic grooming tips as well as tips the traditional groomer may not suggest. With notes on emphasizing high points and minimizing flaws, the only real drawback to this guide is the lack of actual photos.
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Top 5 Best Advanced Dog Grooming Books
11 The Competition Grooming Guide
by the Groomer's Mall
A thorough guide, this book is designed to include tips for the more experienced groomer. Including tips specific to the competition grooming circuit, this is a must have resource for reference.
With detailed steps on the individual breed grooming recommendations and easy to follow steps on professional cuts, this book takes a unique and non-traditional approach. Not only does this guide cover the “must know” cuts, but it also provides plenty of tips on how to get a “leg up” on other groomers.
12 Caring for the Canine Coat
by Christein Sertzel (2012)
Caring for the Canine Coat touches on the topic of coat care and maintenance as well as the business side of canine grooming. Where other grooming guides focus on cut and style, this book puts a significant focus on care of the skin and health of the coat.
Of course, this book touches on grooming techniques, but its main focus is providing a complete and thorough groom. Unlike other grooming manuals which promote the use of commercial products, Sertzel focuses her approach on all natural product use.
13 The Dog Groomer's Manual: A Definitive Guide to the Science, Practice and Art of Dog Grooming
by Sue Gould (2014)
One of the most unique products on this list of the best dog grooming books, this 403-page manual is focused on the veterinary principles behind good grooming practice. By emphasizing the natural anatomy of the dog, this image rich resource helps experienced groomers to work with the shape of the dog.
With 1,000 color photographs included, Gould also touches on skin concerns commonly encountered by groomers, first aid techniques for accidents that may happen on the job, hygiene and safety protocols, and more advanced grooming tips and tricks. A thick manual referencing guidelines from global grooming organizations, this book should be kept on hand by every groomer.
14 Ultimate Dog Grooming
by Eileen Geeson, Barbara Vetter, Lia Whitmore (2015)
The second section focuses more on grooming as a business from starting a new business to buying the necessary equipment for a salon to common problems encountered by new grooming businesses. Lastly, the third section of this must have reference touches on grooming specifics for 170 different AKC recognized breeds in detail.
15 Creative Grooming: From Beginner to Winner
by Victoria Pearman (2014)
Although classified as a basic guide, this book focuses on the more non-traditional grooming options. It's certainly one of the best dog grooming books for groomers in every stage that want to put a unique spin on their grooming practice.
Providing insight from the creative stylist of the year of 2014, Pearman’s book introduces the where’s and how-to’s of extreme grooming options. From where to find pet-friendly creative grooming products to the creative grooming process, Pearman covers it all.
Top 5 Best Dog Grooming Business Books
16 Petedge The Business Guide To Pet Grooming
by Sam Kohl
Published in 2013, Kohl’s book is an easy to understand, but a concise guide for any pet groomer looking to open shop. Whether you are looking to start a home-based business or set up a larger grooming business, this book is a fully loaded guide.
221 photographs and illustrations are packed into 168 pages that touch on the planning, building, and management of a successful grooming shop. It made our list of the best dog grooming books because it's a great reference for beginning or experienced groomers.
17 Prosperous Pet Business: Interviews With The Experts
by Kristin Morrison and Ian Dunbar (2016)
Published in 2016, Morrison and Dunbar’s book features 20 full interviews with various pet industry professionals. The twenty experts interviewed in this book cover everything from the foundation of a successful pet business to hiring the right staff, to managing multiple businesses successfully.
Although this book isn’t specifically targeted towards the pet grooming business, it is packed with plenty of gems sure to lead any groomer to success. Being a dog groomer isn't all about the grooming. You also need to understand the business side of things as well, if you ever want to venture out on your own.
18 How to Start a Home-based Pet Grooming Business
by Kathy Salzberg (1995)
This 217-page book by Kathy Salzberg is designed for the pet groomer looking to set up an in-home grooming business. Unlike other grooming business manuals that focus solely on commercial businesses, this easy to follow guide is specific to the smaller in-home salon.
From pricing competitively without deterring customers to attracting clients to a home-based salon, Salzberg shares twenty-four years of business acumen in this guide. Can you see why we added it to the list of best dog grooming books?
19 The Successful Pet Groomer: Shop, Home, Housecall
by Ellen Ehrlich (2014)
This short 95-page manual might be slender, but it’s packed full of tips for successful grooming businesses of all types. Whether you are looking to succeed in a commercial business, a home-based business, a house call business or a mobile business, this structured guide is a great starting point for any business plan.
This resource even comes packed with example waivers, forms, policy outlines and more. It is an amazing resource for any dog groomer who is thinking about starting their own business.
20 From Problems to Profits: The Madson Management System for Pet Grooming Businesses
by Ogle, Madeline Bright, Ph.D. (1997)
A 304-page guide, From Problems to Profits by Madeline Bright Ogle builds on a business plan that has proven successful for pet grooming businesses nationwide. It is designed to eliminate the mistakes made by most new business owners.
This manual emphasizes solid economic growth strategies combined with expert management techniques for success. It's an excellent guide for anyone thinking of starting a pet grooming business.
And this rounds up our list of twenty best dog grooming books. Whether you're a complete beginner, an aspiring professional pet groomer or getting ready to start your own dog grooming business, this list should give you a head starts in most ventures.