Dog Grooming

With more than 84.6 million American families owning one or more dogs, professional grooming is a thriving industry with a bright future—and you can complete the training in less than three months.

Learn the skills, techniques, and tools of the trade to become a dog groomer with Harford Community College's Dog Grooming program. This program provides you with the opportunity to gain the knowledge and skills needed to function safely and appropriately as a dog groomer, as well as preparing you for the National Dog Grooming Association of America (NDGAA) certification exam. You'll learn how to bathe, cut and style a dog's coat, as well as clip nails and clean ears. The program also includes a hands-on externship in a grooming salon.

Program Overview

Credential Earned:

Dog Grooming Certificate upon successfull completion of the National Dog Grooming Association of America (NDGAA) certification exam.


No. of Classes Required:

2 prerequisite courses

3 required courses

50-hour externship



In-classroom with hands-on training in on-campus salon, plus externship


Contact Information:

Monique Brunson



Must be at least 18 years of age and have a high school diploma or GED

Animal First Aid & CPR


  • Dog Grooming Certification I: Introduction to Dog Grooming
  • Dog Grooming Certification II: Basic Grooming Techniques
  • Dog Grooming Certification III: Advanced Grooming Techniques
  • Dog Grooming Externship


You will work with a variety of dog breeds and the instructor will guide you while you practice grooming skills and techniques, providing feedback every step of the way. 


What Can I Do When I Complete This Program?

After completing this program, you may enjoy an artistic and rewarding career assisting pet owners in keeping their dogs looking their best. Groomers may be found working in pet salons, veterinary hospitals, mobile grooming facilities, or even from their own homes.



Employment of animal care and service workers in grooming salons is projected to increase in order to keep up with the growing demand for animal care.


According to, the average salary for a pet groomer is $33,895* per year in the United States, with a projected employment growth rate of 22% from 2014-2024 (Bureau of Labor Statistics), faster than the average for all occupations in the U.S.


*Completion of this program does not guarantee this salary.


Who Teaches This Program?

Monica Taylor began her studies in animal science at Harford Technical High School. Upon graduation in 2007, she worked for Pet Smart as a professional pet stylist. In 2014, Monica and her husband started their own grooming business. They grew their business exponentially through being knowledgeable, personable, dependable and innovative. After a brief pause to take care of a family matter, they reopened in 2017, adding a few more plans to their business platform. They partnered with a nutraceutical company (Ne'Vetica), in-home boarding and dog-walking services. In the spring of 2018, Monica became the pet grooming instructor for HCC. In 2019 they opened their grooming salon, "LaBella Pet Boutique'' in the town of Aberdeen. In 2020 Monica became an active member of IJA (International Judges Association). After competing in the World of Pets Expo-MD through IJA, she became a member of the Maryland Groom Team and went on to earn several grooming awards.