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Student Features

Student Feature: Diana Monroy

diana monroy headshot
headshot of diana monroy

Name: Diana Monroy

Location: Orangeville, CA

QC Courses you’re taking:

*Your website: http://fluffypawzgrooming.com/ (*site currently under construction)

Tell us a little bit about yourself!

I’m a 38-year-old, stay-at-home mother of two children: a 7-year-old girl and a 4-year-old boy. I freelance as an artist, primarily in Graphic Design. I also have 3 dogs and 1 cat. I’m a total animal lover!

How did you know that grooming would become more than just a hobby?

I graduated college in 2017 and worked in advertising for a while after that. I got married, and after I had my daughter, I made the decision to stay home and raise her. Then came my son, so things were busy! But now that he’s getting ready to start school, I want to get ready to join the work force again.

I knew I wanted to start my own business, and I knew I wanted to work with animals. I’ve always groomed my own dogs, so the idea of becoming a groomer just happened naturally. Now I’m excited to complete my grooming courses, and start growing my business!

diana monroy grooming a golden lab

What’s your favorite dog breed that you love to groom, and why?

My favorite breed that I’ve ever groomed is definitely the Yorkie! I had a tea cup Yorkie when I was younger. He had such silky hair, and it looked so beautiful whenever it’d be washed and combed. The best part would always be in the summer, when I would cut his hair short. It would make him look like a puppy all over again!

Why did you decide to do your dog grooming courses online with QC Pet Studies, rather than in a physical class? How have you found the overall online learning experience?

Like I mentioned before, I am a stay-at-home mom. I don’t have family nearby that can help with my son’s care, so I’m not able to go to a physical dog grooming class. Because of this, the online option worked perfectly for me! I did my research on several online grooming courses, and QC Pet Studies was definitely the one that made the most sense.

I liked the way it was structured: it provides a more organized and straightforward approach. The fact that QC offers the First Aid course for groomers was definitely what made me make my final decision, though! None of the other grooming courses I found online seemed to offer it, but I believe it it’s very important for groomers to have basic first aid when handling other people’s pets!

So far, the experience has been wonderful! I have learned so much, and both the instructions and the course books are so easy to understand and follow. The one thing I would recommend would be to make it a tiny bit easier to contact the instructor with course questions, but other than that, it’s been a great experience so far.  I was really surprised with how thorough the courses are!

fluffy pomeranian before hair cut
fluffy pomeranian after hair cut

What was the hardest dog grooming technique you’ve encountered? Is there a particular technique or skill you’re learning to master right now?

I have to say, the hardest technique has been the nail trimming. At first, I was so afraid of hurting the dog that I would transfer my nervousness to the dog. The dogs with black nails have been especially challenging. I’ve slowly been getting more confident, but it’s still a little stressful. I try to take deep breaths and trim a little at a time. This is one skill I will only get better at with experience!

Do you have any advice for students of dog grooming courses who are struggling to find dogs to practice on? Where should they be looking? How can they assure the owners that they’re going to take care of the dog?

The way I’ve found dogs to practice on is by reaching out to friends and family. I have been lucky so far, in that many of them are dog people; they either have the dog I need, or they know someone who has one. I’ve found that offering a free groom makes it easier to find people willing to lend you their dogs. I let the people see where I will be grooming their dog, and I’ve also made professional business cards to provide them. I find that this helps them feel more secure about handing over their precious pet.

Also, I keep pictures of dogs I’ve groomed, as well as photos of my own pets that I groom myself. This way, potential clients can see that even though I am a student, I do have some experience with grooming.

Admittedly, there is one breed I have not been able to find through friends or family. So I’m going to go on my local Facebook groups, so I can reach out and see if I can find someone local who will be willing to lend me their dog. I believe social media can be a helpful tool to find dogs to practice on.

There’s also the option of visiting your local shelter and asking them if you can help out by grooming dogs there!

scruffy, long haired dog before hair cut
long, curly-haired dog after hair cut

How do you think QC’s dog grooming courses have prepared you to work in the field? (E.g. was the tutors’ feedback useful, do you feel that you’ll graduate with a mastery of all your tools? Etc.)

I think this course is so well-rounded that I now feel very confident when I groom dogs! I think the best part is hearing the instructor’s real work experience. The tips they offer on how to deal with problems you’ll encounter in the field have been very helpful.

For example, a friend reached out to me to help with a dog they rescued. The dog doesn’t allow them to cut his nails, and so the nails had gotten really long. I told them I would give it a shot. I remembered my instructor’s advice for situations just like this one: to hold firm when the dog tries to pull his feet away, and just hold on until the dog realizes you aren’t going to let go.

When I applied this advice, it worked like a charm! I was able to trim the dog’s nails, which obviously made his owners were very happy. I’ve found that those little tips offered by my instructor have been a big help!

You’re still in the process of your dog grooming courses. After graduation, do you want to work in a salon, as a freelance groomer, etc.? What are your career goals, and how would you like to work towards them in 2020?

When I graduate, I plan to open my own business from home. My home has a separate building that I’m currently remodeling, so I can turn it into my dog salon. I’ve already received my permits and business license, and I am a month or so away from finishing the remodel.

So as soon as I graduate from QC, I’ll focus on growing my home grooming business. At first it will be a part-time job, but I am hoping that by the end of 2020, I can turn it into my full-time career!

Want to start your own dog grooming business, but don’t know where to begin? Click here for everything you need to get the ball rolling!

QC Pet Studies’ Top 10 Dog Grooming Articles of 2019

corgi puppy in owner's arms

Wow, 2019 felt like it went by in the blink of an eye! Let’s welcome 2020 by first taking a look back at your top 10 favorite articles over this past year.

It’s pretty impressive that this article made this year’s list, given that it was only published a couple weeks ago! But when you look at what it’s about, it’s easy to see why. Though entertainingly filled with satire, this article succeeds in driving home a very important message: it can be all too easy to destroy a good reputation. Avoid the 7 prime examples listed here, and you’ll ensure that your clients will only ever have the best things to say about you and your business!

female groomer trimming dog's hair

QC graduate and professional dog groomer, Casey Bechard, was on fire this year! Despite the fact that she only just received her grooming certification at the beginning of 2019, her career has quickly taken off and only gotten better ever since. Here, she lists some really fantastic goals that would – and did – strengthen her grooming career. Check them out, and don’t be shy to use some of those goals for yourself in 2020!

Let’s face it: big doggos are precious, but they can also be a little intimidating. Add to that the fact that a lot of your work as a groomer will be with small to medium-size breeds, and you might wind up feeling a little out of your element when a Saint Bernard or Rottweiler comes in for an appointment.

But it doesn’t need to be overwhelming! Just like with smaller dogs, grooming larger breeds can become second-nature – you just need to know what to do! This article will equip you with 3 of the best tips to get you started!

No dog groomer can hope to be successful without sturdy and reliable equipment under their belt. However, even the best grooming kits can eventually become useless if not properly taken care of. If you’re guilty of committing any of these 6 mistakes, your grooming tools may be at risk! Keep your equipment pristine – and your reputation, solid – by avoiding these bad habits!

dog getting hair trimmed

QC Pet Studies loves to show off our talented students and graduates! After all, what’s more inspiring than to see someone who was in your very shoes go on to become successful in the field? Located all the way in New Zealand, Katie was first a graduate of QC Makeup Academy, having started her very own hair and makeup business.

Since then, she’s found a passion for grooming and turned to online dog grooming school. She’s taken both QC’s Dog Grooming Course and the First Aid for Groomers class. Driven by her love of animals, Katie’s dog grooming business now takes up the majority of her time – even being regularly booked up to 3 weeks in advance! Learn more about Katie’s journey, and remember: it can happen for you, too!

Casey’s back, with even more professional knowledge to share! This time, it’s her insight on what it’s really like to work in a dog grooming salon. While there are many pros, there are also challenges that you’ll have to adjust to and overcome. Here, Casey shares 3 of these obstacles. This article is definitely a helpful and insightful read, especially for anyone interested in working professionally within a salon setting!

Any person with basic canine education and a pair of trimmers can call themselves a dog groomer, but it takes a lot more than that to truly be a great one. From knowing your breeds, to proper handling and sanitation of equipment, this article provides you with 7 key tips to make yourself truly stand out from the competition in the dog grooming world.

golden lab getting bath

Let’s be real: dog odors are a nuisance. But aside from making sure that your pooch gets a regular bath, what can be done about the smells already living in your home? You’ll find the answer to that very question – and so much more – here in this article. Save your nose, and start reading!

Dogs are adorable. But dog hair? Not so much – especially when it seems permanently glued to all of your furniture and clothes! Sure, you can make sure to brush your pup regularly, but that isn’t enough! If you really want to get rid of all that pesky dog hair, your best bet is to check out (and then follow) these 6 invaluable tips.

On top of being a fountain of knowledge, we’ve already covered that Casey Bechard manages her very own grooming salon. Needless to say, she knows what she’s talking about! She also knows better than anyone how tricky it can be when first starting out as a groomer; particularly, the most common mistakes that can happen while you’re still learning the ropes.

Luckily, she’s compiled this list of the top 6 errors you may find yourself likely to make, so you’ll be able to avoid them! Definitely worth the read, and no surprise at all that this is 2019’s most popular Sniffin’ Around article!

groomer holding puppy

Who knows what articles will become most popular next year, but we’re excited to find out! Are there any topics you’d like to read in 2020? Let us know in the comments!

Ready to become a professional groomer in 2020? Enroll in QC’s leading Dog Grooming course and start your journey today!