- Training and experience grooming common dog breeds is a benefit to learn
- Employees must be responsible to work the schedule they are assigned. Excessive tardiness or truancy is disruptive to patient care and client service and cannot be accommodated.
- All employees must be able to read, write legibly, and communicate clearly in English both in person and on the telephone. Employees must have good oral and written communication skills including the ability to listen, talk, write, type, and otherwise communicate with professionalism and tact. Proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation are expected.
- Basic computer literacy including the ability to type on a computer keyboard, use a computer mouse, and view information on a computer screen is required.
- Must be able to read a street map and give directions to the practice.
- Employees must have the physical strength and ability to lift and carry a pet or other object weighing up to 50 pounds without assistance. Must be able to assist in lifting patients or other objects weighing more than 50 pounds.
- Must be able to work energetically for the entire assigned shift, sometimes exceeding 9 – 10 hours per day. The shift does not end until all duties are completed for the day or until a doctor or other supervisor dismisses the staff. Physical exertion will include repetitive standing, walking, stooping, bending, twisting, and lifting. Must be able to grasp, hold, and manipulate objects varying from small and fine to large and heavy with both hands.
- Employees must be able to safely and competently operate equipment pertinent to carrying out their duties.
- Employees must physically hold and restrain pets who may struggle, scratch, or try to bite. This requires the emotional ability to remain calm and compassionate with animals who are reacting to fear and/or pain and the physical strength, dexterity, and reflexes to keep the pet, themselves, and other doctors or staff safe.
- Employees must be able to view physical symptoms or medical problems, read medical instruments, and follow handwritten instructions.
- Employees must be able to respond and quickly react to frequent auditory signals, warnings, or communication from other staff, animals, or medical equipment.
- Employees must be able to make independent decisions and solve complex problems.
General Job Requirements
- Read and comply with the policies of the General Employee Manual
- Follow all hospital and pet hotel standard procedures and protocols, both current and future, as contained within the training manuals or as written or communicated by doctors or other supervisory staff
- Carry out all duties in a professional and courteous manner and remain respectful and polite in speech, tone, and actions under all circumstances
- Participate in performance reviews as requested
- Be teachable and accept performance critiques positively as a means to learn and grow
- Remain flexible and willing to implement new or changing procedures in the future
- Always be in position and ready to work promptly at the start of each work day
- Groomers must be responsible to work the schedule for which they have booked appointments. Excessive tardiness or truancy is disruptive to pet care and client service and cannot be accommodated for this position.
- Groomers must maintain accurate records of time worked by clocking in and out for each shift.
- Maintain a neat professional appearance while at work, including a clean and unwrinkled uniform with name identification.
- Every staff member is responsible to maintain the cleanliness and sanitary condition of the entire hospital, including the parking lot, sidewalks, and entries. Trash, urine, feces, blood or other such things should be cleaned and sanitized immediately.
- Employees of a veterinary hospital will encounter stressful situations including but not limited to emotional clients, pet emergencies, and managing multiple priorities at once. All staff members must be able to manage stress in order to carry out the duties of the job in a calm and professional manner.
- Employees will interact with many types of pets and should not be overly fearful of unfamiliar animals. All pets must be treated with kindness and respect at all times.
- Follow OSHA standards and be familiar with Material Data Safety Sheets. Occupational hazards may include but are not limited to animal bite or scratch wounds and exposure to x-rays, anesthetic gases, caustic or toxic materials, and zoonotic diseases. Employees must follow all safety guidelines contained in the employee handbook and posted in hazardous areas.
- Inform the Hospital Manager or a Doctor immediately of all bite or deep scratch wounds you suffer so that reports can be made and you can be referred for timely medical care by a physician if necessary. Clean all wounds quickly and thoroughly with surgical scrub.
- Learn and use CPH & PR language and abbreviations for describing common services
- Be willing to volunteer for various salon management tasks or other duties that may be reasonably assigned from time to time
- Attend staff and team meetings; provide advance written notice to the hospital manager if a meeting will be missed; retrieve and study notes from any missed meetings and ask for clarification if anything from the meeting is unclear.
- Attend continuing education opportunities if requested
- Follow established security protocols including locking and setting the alarm to ensure the safety and security of patients, staff, and the facility.
- Use your own password identification to enter the practice-management software and your own unique initials or name on all paperwork, Grooming Report Cards, etc to signify your work
- Maintain a pleasant and cooperative attitude toward co-workers. Be willing to help any staff member with a task if requested.
- Maintain confidentiality regarding clients, patients, medical and financial records, and hospital and resort procedures, policies, and protocols.
- Maintain and project a positive attitude about the hospital, clients, patients, and co-workers. Avoid gossiping, condemning, judging, and making negative comments or participating in such discussions. Negative feelings or concerns should be discussed with the Hospital Administrator. Instead of complaining about problems, strive to be part of the solution.
Client Education & Service
Our goal when a client walks in the door is to WOW them with our friendly, professional service. Constantly be looking for ways to creatively accomplish this goal. The following tasks are the bare minimum in providing good customer service:
- Smile, make direct eye contact, and greet clients and patients in a friendly and professional way, making them feel welcome and comfortable. Remember and use the client and pet’s name in conversation.
- If the pet’s temperament allows, you should touch and talk to the pet within 5 seconds of greeting the client. Make every client and pet feel cared for and special.
- Strive during the course of every client interaction to give a sincere compliment or say something nice about them or their pet or children.
- Assist clients by holding doors, helping with rambunctious pets or children, and carrying things when needed.
- Assist clients with unruly or unrestrained pets. Ensure that all dogs are leashed and that cats and smaller pets are caged. Isolate aggressive pets. Request assistance as needed.
- Educate clients about common problems such as fleas, heartworm tests and preventatives, fecal tests and parasites, impacted anal glands, and ear infections and recommend appointments with one of our doctors if appropriate
- Explain and recommend appropriate vaccinations and wellness care
- Recognize the limits of your knowledge. If you are not absolutely confident that you know the answer to a client’s question, do not answer it. Ask another staff member for help.
- Be familiar with dog and cat breeds and coat colors.
- Be able to communicate and enforce the hospital’s payment policies with poise and tact.
- Listen actively and convey concern, empathy, and compassion to clients.
- Conduct tours of the salon and/or hospital. Before each tour, ensure that the facility is orderly and that staff and pets are prepared for tours.
- Be patient, polite, and compassionate with a client who is emotional or discourteous.
- Respond with polite and genuine concern to client complaints or comments regarding their bill or their service. Immediately remove loudly complaining or angry clients to a private area. If a client is unhappy with a groom and communicates this on a feedback form or through another staff member, the groomer must call the client.
- Groomers are expected to satisfy the client to the best of their ability. This may mean clearing up a miscommunication, touching up the groom for free and/or getting it right the next time, or refunding the client’s money.
- Respond to telephone calls promptly in a courteous and friendly manner.
- If a call must be placed on hold, ask for the caller’s permission: “Can you hold, please?” Wait for the caller’s response and thank them before placing them on hold.
- Callers should not be left on hold without checking back with them for more than 2 minutes. The phone will start to beep after the caller has been on hold for 1 minute.
- Smile while answering and talking on the phone to enhance the friendly quality of your voice.
- Use the caller and pet’s name in conversations to personalize the interaction
- Be able to recognize if a caller has an emergency situation and respond appropriately. If in doubt, ask. Real emergencies should be directed to come to the hospital immediately. Non-emergencies should be scheduled an appointment as soon as possible.
Computer Skills & Record Keeping
- Invoice grooming fees, flea control, and products in the computer.
- Maintain your appointment schedule within the computerized appointment book
- Maintain a record within the notes field of the blade used and any special instructions regarding the groom so it may be accessed at future visits.
- Offer to make a follow up appointment for all grooms to get them on a regular grooming schedule and provide reminder appointment cards to client.
Grooming Admissions and Discharges
- Note and follow through on any special instructions given by the client. Make sure every pet is uniquely identified with a cage card or check in sheet.
- Recognize patients with contagious or potentially contagious diseases (coughing dogs, sneezing cats, puppies with bad diarrhea) and follow isolation procedures including escorting them immediately to an exam room and having them examined by a doctor prior to admitting them to the hospital or pet salon areas where they may have contact with other pets.
- Take custody of pets from clients. Restrain dogs with the practice’s leashes and return the client’s leash to the client.
- If the pet also has Discharge Instructions or an Exam Checklist from the hospital, present this to the client and answer questions if you know the answers. Request assistance if you need further information.
- Make sure pets go home with all medications, products, and personal items.
- All grooms should have a completed Grooming Report to go home if another staff member will be discharging the pet for you.
Pet Handling and Care
- Keep pets safely restrained and under your control at all times.
- Learn and report symptoms that indicate a pet may be ill during their visit.
- Learn to safely handle fearful/aggressive pets with compassion and respect
- When caring for hospitalized or boarding animals be careful to follow all instructions on the treatment sheet and update the doctor on call with information about the attitude, temperature, and any eating or bowel changes.