The best dog groomers in Canberra

dog groomer

Where are the best dog groomers in Canberra? Photo: File.

We all love our dogs, right? And we want them to look their best. But with a busy schedule, sometimes the member of our family that always puts us first doesn’t get the attention they deserve. That’s where a good dog groomer comes in.

A trip to a great dog groomer can actually be enjoyable for your pooch and you. We all know it feels great to get some pampering, a good clean, and a haircut. For your dog, it’s no different. When they look good, they feel good too.

In this article, we’ll give you a few things to look for in a great dog groomer, as well as a list of the best groomers in Canberra.

What makes a great dog groomer?

Unfortunately, not all groomers treat our precious pets with the respect they deserve. When seeking out a top-quality groomer, keep an eye out for the following must-have traits.

  • Experience. When you take your dog to a new groomer, it can be a little nerve wracking for you and your dog. Visiting an experienced groomer is a must. The best groomers know how to calm your dog if necessary. The grooming experience will also go a lot smoother if the groomer has the latest and greatest tools of their trade.
  • Knowledge. All dog breeds have different coats and grooming needs, and a good groomer will know this. You should feel confident from first contact that they have adequate knowledge of your dog’s breed’s grooming needs. Don’t be afraid to call and ask before making an appointment.
  • Patience. Dogs are smart cookies and they sense any tension or fear in a groomer. If you want your dog to enjoy the experience, make sure your dog and the groomer have a positive relationship.
  • Fair price. As with any service, it’s important to have financial peace of mind. Try and get a firm quote for the services that you need to avoid any nasty surprises.
  • Mobility. Some grooming services offer a mobile option, coming to your house to groom your dog. Not only can this be a great time saver for dog owners, but your dog may feel less stressed if the grooming is done in a familiar, safe environment.

The best dog groomers in Canberra

RiotACT’s editorial team has combed through 20 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.

To be listed in our Best of Canberra series, each business needs to have consistently received positive feedback on RiotACT and Facebook as well as maintaining a minimum average of 4/5 stars on Google.

Canberra Pet Stylists

Canberra Pet Stylists offers boutique treatments that you can spoil your pooch with, featuring luxury grooming packages and breed-specific grooms, puppy training to get your new pup used to getting groomed, and a day-care service where you can book your dog in for a fun-filled day of spa treatments, playtime and walks. Providing second-to-none service in a safe and stress-free environment, you can trust the qualified team of staff at CPS to give your furry friend the best treatment they can.

Facebook user Diana Williams wrote this review of their experience at Canberra Pet Stylists, “They are wonderful and caring with my dog. He looked great when I picked him up and the staff was very nice to me and my dog! Will continue to take my beloved dog there.”

Wolfy’s V.I.P Pet Styling Ainslie

With over 16 years’ experience in grooming, Wolfy’s V.I.P is one of the most well-established salons in Canberra. Their team of highly qualified professionals promise to look after your pooch as if they were their own, and offer a full range of services, from full grooming, bath and clipping to extra special pampering services like relaxation massages, coat repair and intensive treatments. They are also able to properly cater for the needs of dogs with skin conditions, and have plenty of experience with elderly and nervous dogs – no matter what your dogs’ needs are, Wolfy’s V.I.P is able to meet them!

Happy customer Olivia Robinson wrote this review on Google, “I have been bringing my cavoodle Frank here regularly and they always do a fantastic job- honestly couldn’t fault them! He always comes back looking spot on, and the staff are lovely and gentle. My boy even gets excited to go inside”

Scooby & Friends Dog Grooming

Based at the Canberra Vet Hospital and run by a small team of passionate and talented individuals, Scooby & Friends Dog Grooming is a salon that specialises in small to medium dogs, with a wide range of services promising to make even the dirtiest of pooches look and feel beautiful. What’s more, Scooby & Friends Dog Grooming are big advocates for many rescue groups and sanctuaries in Canberra, such as Greyhound Rescue and Little Oak Sanctuary, so if you’re interested in adopting, fostering, volunteering or donating to a great animal charity why not check out Scooby & Friends next time your dog needs a trim!

See what Facebook user Cadda Mush had to say about their experience at Scooby & Friends, “Top notch people, who understand that not all dogs are comfortable with others AND they do a fantastic groom!”

House of Dog – Mobile Grooming

House of Dog is a professional mobile dog grooming service in Canberra and the surrounding areas, offering convenience for you and comfort for your dog, especially if they are of a nervous disposition and do better closer to home than in the potentially stressful environment of a grooming salon. Owner Tania Piddington has spent several years fostering, training and grooming dogs, and provides the full range of grooming services and hydro-baths in her air-conditioned van, so your dog can enjoy a pampering without having to leave home.

As Tristan Ellis Ford writes in this review of their experience with House of Dog, “We are VERY pleased with House of Dog! She has done our two Portuguese Water Dogs twice now and the most recent cut is probably the best cut either of them have ever had.”

Isabel's Dog Grooming

Owner Isabel Haines opened her salon in 2010, and with 18 years of experience behind her and a talented team of groomers to boot, the priority at Isabel’s Dog Grooming is the happiness of your dog. Whether you’re after a bath, trim or style for your furry friend, expect a clean and secure environment with air conditioning in the summer and heating in the winter, ensuring the comfort of your dog throughout their appointment.

As Sita Matthews writes in this Facebook review, “Isabel is fantastic, my dog loves going to Isabel’s, and always comes home happy. He looks fantastic, too!”

Are you looking for more information on dog and pet care in Canberra? Check out our articles on the best vets, the best emergency and after-hours vets, the best pet shops and pet supplies, the best pet desexing, the best pet insurance and the best dog trainers in town for some handy guides on how to best take care of your furry friend.

Or, if you’re interested in finding somewhere for your pet to stay whilst you’re away, our articles on the best dog walkers & pet sitters, the best dog boarding kennels and the best doggy daycares in Canberra may be of use.

Alternatively, if you’re interested in adopting another furry friend, check out our article on the best place for rescue dogs in Canberra.

Your experience with dog groomers in Canberra

Thanks to our commenters who have provided insightful feedback, if you believe we have got it wrong, please let us know.

Have you had experience with any of the dog groomers listed in this article? Share your experience in the comments area below.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my dog anxious at the groomer?
Some of the smells and sensations associated with grooming can be a bit scary for some dogs, which is perfectly normal. It might be the feeling of the clippers, being handled too much in sensitive areas like paws, ears and groin, or getting wet that is stressing them out. Luckily, there are many ways to combat this. Ask your groomer for a training visit to acclimate your dog to the salon, keep plenty of treats on hand, and be sure to sing lots of praise to your pet when they’re done.
What are breed-specific styles?
There are some styles of trims that are unique to different breeds, other than just the standard kennel cut. Schnauzers, for example, are traditionally groomed with long beards around the muzzle, short all over, and long fur around the legs. On the other hand, poodles are styled with long fur around the legs, ears, top of the head, and then short everywhere else. If your interested in getting a breed-specific trim for your dog, talk to your groomer about what they’re able to do for you.
Can I trim my dog’s nails myself?
Yes! If you get your hands on an appropriately sized pair of clippers (relative to the size of your dog) then you can try trimming your dog’s nails. Just be careful that you don’t trim too short, as the quick of the nail – the pink area within the nail where the nerves and blood vessels are – is very sensitive and will cause a lot of pain if trimmed.
How often should I take my dog to the groomer?
This depends on the breed of your dog and the time of year. If your dog typically grows thick, fluffy fur, then you'll probably want to get them groomed every 4-6 weeks depending on how warm it is. Naturally short-haired breeds should only need to be groomed every 6-8 weeks, but potentially more often the hotter it gets. While dogs are generally pretty good at regulating their own temperature, Canberra gets very hot summers and very cold winters, so keep that in mind when scheduling with your groomer!

What's Your Opinion?

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27 Responses to The best dog groomers in Canberra
JacquieE JacquieE 12:43 pm 25 Nov 20

I’ve been very happy with Central Bark Pet Styling at Gungahlin. They are very kind and caring and do an excellent job. My dog has a very thick double coat & I find it impossible to groom her effectively. She came out of Central Bark looking like a new dog, all stripped & ready for summer. Their number is 6174 4203.

Frank Booth Frank Booth 6:41 pm 13 Feb 20

Canberra Pet Stylists in Gowrie are brilliant. Thoroughly recommended. Aaron and his team listen to what you want and what is best for your pet.

Carrie Carrie 8:14 pm 10 Jan 20

I’ve been to so many different groomers in Canberra depending on availability when my dogs coat got too long. I read the review below from Aaron Gee and decided to give Canberra Pet Stylists at Gowrie a try. Totally in love with this place! My Shih Tsu came away looking stunning – by far the best groom he’s ever had. Best groomer ever!

slightlydapper slightlydapper 5:25 pm 07 Dec 18

I use Snip Dog Grooming Studio in Gordon, very friendly team and they do an amazing groom on my Affenpinscher. Worth checking out if you’re on the Southside.

Shosh Shosh 2:19 pm 28 Sep 18

We use Grooming Genie (Cale) for grooming our spoodles. He is wonderful with the dogs and always totally competent. One of our dogs is not an easy personality to groom and he has no issue with her at all. A++++

Aaron Gee Aaron Gee 12:19 pm 15 May 18

Shame riot act didn’t include Canberra’s only Master Groomer’s for cats & dogs in Canberra…

After moving to Canberra. I was driving back to Sydney every four weeks for my girl to be groomed. If you truly want the best in Canberra – Canberra Pet Only MASTER GROOMERS for both Dogs & Cats. Plus an amazing collection of imported designer pet products. I only take my girl to the best, not worth risking her with under qualified groomers. People are opening places without any training or qualifications, or buying a mobile trailer and turning up on your doorstep. Ask the question when booking, are your staff fully qualified and experienced, what level are their qualifications. Not just risking poor groom, safety is paramount after hearing too many sad grooming injury stories. I wouldn’t try anyone else

    Catty Catty 2:22 pm 19 Oct 18

    Totally agree, Aaron. Have been going there for years. My dogs are a difficult breed to shape properly, but Karen knows her breed shapes and has always done a superb job. She is a Master Groomer and is now training up the new staff. So far the results have not been disappointing. I will continue to recommend them.

    Zoe Ellis Zoe Ellis 10:55 am 08 Sep 20

    I’m so glad you think that Aaron, your endorsement must mean a lot, especially since you now own Canberra Pet Stylists. It’s very important to back yourself these days.

Heather Richards Heather Richards 2:40 pm 21 Feb 18

Booked Grooming Genie after reading the positive posts- my appointment was at 2.00pm – at 2.10pm Cale sends message to say has to reschedule as he has the ‘man-flu’ – pity he could not have told me a few hours again so I did not waste taking half a day off work!!. Very disappointed, will not use him – will just go back to my normal groomer who is reliable.

Showpuppy Showpuppy 12:12 pm 28 Nov 14

I have been a groomer/trainer/handler/exhibitor of purebred dogs for approx 20 years. I can groom any breed any style. Poodles and Gundogs a Specialty. I am located outside of Canberra in Young but I am considering coming to Canberra for 2 days a week and work in a salon for extra money for myself an also to help with the increase of bookings for a salon. Will have own kit. So if anyone is interested you can contact me and we can discuss it.

Getting back to the post though, Golden Retrievers should never be clipped! A good groomer can get that coat out correctly and shape and tidy the feathering without using clippers. Putting clippers on a double coat causes the coat to grow back soft and removes the necessary guard hairs for weather insulation. I hope the groomer you ended up with explained this to you.

Hearing these horror stories makes me want to return to ACT and open a salon again

    Shosh Shosh 2:33 pm 28 Sep 18

    Showpuppy – Cale needs help with his Mobile Service and he is so skilled I have always thought he may not get anyone locally who is experienced enough – It may be worth you connecting with him. You can tell him Tiffany and Maddie (our pups) suggested you might need so assistance. Cheers

swampdonkey swampdonkey 10:29 pm 21 Oct 14

Cale’s phone number at Grooming Genie is actually 0400 661688, have to get a different font on next business cards to avoid confusion 🙂

nybor nybor 2:41 pm 09 Oct 14

This is probably a bit late for a post on this thread. However, Cale from Grooming Genie
(0400 667688) just washed and groomed my Golden Retriever. I have taken the dog to a number of salons in Canberra in the hope of finding someone who knew what they were doing for a GR clip, no luck till today. Cale did the best wash and clip I have ever had done on the dog. He looks great. Can not recommend Cale highly enough.

viking princess viking princess 1:08 pm 23 Jun 14

Cale from Grooming Genie washed and clipped my Jack Russell cross today and I have never been happier with a mobile grooming service. Friendly, efficient, obviously likes dogs and did exactly what I asked for. Highly recommended!

Fluffypup Fluffypup 11:41 am 02 Jun 14

Hi Jessie. Kate from Dogs Best Friend here. Im really sorry to hear you were unhappy with your groom. Just to clarify our price list is an estimate only and price depends on the style of the cut, the dogs behaviour and the condition of the coat.($65/h is what we quote if unsure). Normally I would offer a free re-do to your satisfaction if a customer was unhappy so if u would like this please call me on 0410457850. I actually do Love my job and my customers so im really sorry if I was grumpy on that day!! We all have bad days I guess….! Best wishes

jesse jesse 12:59 pm 19 Apr 14

I have noted the recommendation for pet grooming at Ainslie. Don’t go there if you want courteous and competent attention. My spaniel came out looking a mess. Uneven clipping in places I didn’t want clipped. Overcharged. Take a look at the price board on the footpath outside the shop. For what I was charged for a light trim -$65- my 9.5kg dog should have been a Great Dane. Have spent hours trying to straighten him up for a special occasion.
The owner was grumpy and I would not recommend this place to anyone.

troll-sniffer troll-sniffer 7:47 pm 29 Oct 13

Gee, just had a ‘media moment’ with all the media articles etc on certain adults ‘grooming’ minors, this headline stood out like a sore thumb. I was wondering how one would groom a dog…

MsCheeky MsCheeky 5:08 pm 29 Oct 13

Good news, because I had Feral and Cheryl clipped on the weekend by a mobile groomer from the southside, and was less than impressed.

Patrise Patrise 2:18 pm 29 Oct 13

I just found the best mobile dog groomer in the ACT! Cale operates Grooming Genie 0400 667 688. Northside but will travel anywhere. My dog has been badly treated at one salon and his attitude was really bad if anyone touched him. I had tranquillizers on hand but Cale was really gentle. I had a very happy doggy at the end. Can’t recommend Cale highly enough!!!!

    Shosh Shosh 2:29 pm 28 Sep 18

    One of our dogs has also required tranquilizers in the past and it was still a nightmare – Cale has never needed them.

Cuttlefish Cuttlefish 9:34 am 15 Oct 13

We go to kippax

friskyfilly friskyfilly 10:34 pm 14 Oct 13

Correction that should be $10.000 not $19k

friskyfilly friskyfilly 10:10 pm 14 Oct 13

Hi there you are more than welcome at my salon, fancy feathers and fur in kippax 62542323. I promise to take good care of you little one and she wiping look like a 1980s vita grit.

grunge_hippy grunge_hippy 9:28 pm 12 Oct 13

I took our big hairy kelpie X for a clip at the new best friends at tuggeranong and they did a great job. Bit on the exy side, but I will go back.

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