smart spending

5 great pet jobs for animal lovers

Pet groomer
4 of 7
Pet Groomer

Groomers get Fido and Fifi looking dapper (yes, there are cat groomers, too) through combing, bathing, nail-cutting and shearing.

Income potential: Pay is $75,000 to $100,000 per year, estimates Debra Kusch of Kusch's Canine Cleaners in Aloha, Ore. Kusch charges on the low end, from $25 to $30 per hour and grooms eight to 10 dogs per day, five days a week. To see if you want to become a self-employed groomer, Kusch suggests working for someone else first in pet jobs such as bathers or combers.

Startup costs: Groomers operate out of their own home, a shop or a mobile grooming van. Costs for basic grooming supplies and home modifications, such as pet tubs and crate dryers, are minimal, Kusch says. Starting your own shop costs $50,000 to $150,000 in major cities, according to online resource Wag'n Tails Mobile Pet Grooming Conversions Inc., in Granger, Ind., offers basic trailers starting at $32,180 and its Pet Stylist Elite van for $83,192.

Check out: The National Dog Groomers Association of America Inc. in Clark, Pa., offers educational programs.




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