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Level 2 Dog Groomer Apprenticeship – Standard

This one year programme is designed for dog groomers that are working in a range of environments from departments within large retail pet stores/ garden centres through to independent salons. They will work for day care providers, rescue centres and kennels.

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Course Summary

Subject Area: Animal Care
Location: Workplace
Full Time or Part Time: FT
Level: 2
Number Of Years: 1
Interview Required?: Y

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Course Information for Students

The broad purpose of the occupation is to complete an end to end maintenance groom on a range of dog breeds and coat types. Grooms include assessing the health, bathing, drying, brushing and trimming a diverse range of dogs. The dog groomer will take into account dogs with wire, wool, smooth, double, silky coats and those with a combination coat. Dog groomers will use their breed knowledge to produce a grooming plan and select appropriate techniques to handle, bath, dry, brush and trim. Nail trimming will also be carried out. A dog groomer will have responsibility for meeting the dog’s welfare needs during grooming. They will recognise signs and symptoms of ill health including those relating to skin, coat condition and hereditary diseases. They will also identify potential causes and indicators of stress during the groom. They will adapt their approach and handling techniques. They select equipment and products to meet the needs of the specific dog. The dog groomer will understand canine behaviour. The dog groomer will provide customer service from the point of drop off through to collection. They will gather information from the client to support the grooming process and provide maintenance advice to the owner following the groom. For example, frequency of brushing to maintain good coat condition or brush type.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation will interact with dog grooming stylists, salon managers and customers. They may work with veterinary professionals, service and product suppliers and manufacturers. They may liaise with other animal care professionals and industry bodies too. Dog groomers may work under the supervision of a stylist or salon manager. They may work as part of a larger team. They will share technical knowledge with peers and will support newly appointed dog groomers or volunteers.


Length of programme

12 months prior to the End-point Assessment Gateway


Please see the Institute for Apprenticeship website for further information

Dog groomer / Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education

  • Some experience volunteering or working within the animal care sector including dogs
  • Good work ethic
  • Be in employment and be committed to your career
  • Three GCSEs at grade D/3 or above including English and Maths

The apprentice will follow a training programme to complete the apprenticeship requirements and meet the knowledge, skills and behaviours required for them to be fully competent:

  • The apprentice works and trains with the employer and/or training provider
  • The apprentice will create and maintain a mandatory portfolio in order to provide supporting evidence that will be needed to supplement the knowledge, skills and behaviours observed by the Independent Assessor at the End-point Assessment. The portfolio will be used as evidence for the professional discussion.
  • A record of off-the-job training – this is training that must occur for a minimum of 20% of the time the apprentice is paid to work and is training delivered outside of their normal working duties – to develop a wider understanding of the industry.


Please see the Institute for Apprenticeship website for further information

Dog groomer / Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education


Learning will take place in a variety of ways, which could include workplace training, formal courses, work shadowing, industrial visits, research, self-study, attendance at College for classroom/workshop activities and time spent completing assignments set by the assessor.

The apprentice will undertake their end-point assessment when the employer, training provider and apprentice all consider that they are ready to do so.  This stage of the apprenticeship is known as the gateway and will not be reached until the apprentice has completed at least 12 months on the programme. 

The end-point assessment will be carried out by an independent assessor and will be made up of a practical observation (2 hours) and a professional discussion informed by the completed portfolio.

The apprenticeship will be delivered in the workplace and on-site. 

You need PPE for the workplace and writing materials.

End-point Assessment Gradings

This qualification is graded Fail, Pass or Distinction

Functional Skills

Before taking the end-point assessment, apprentices must

  • Have or achieve Level 1 English and Maths Functional Skills (equivalent to GCSE grades D to G)
  • Have or take the test for Level 2 English and Maths (equivalent to GCSE grades A* to C)

Further Study

You can progress to a full-time Level 3 in Animal Care programme or a further apprenticeship programme.

For more information contact Derby College on 0800 0280289 or

Course Information for Employers

You may already have someone in your organisation or someone has come to you direct asking for an apprenticeship, but if you don’t we have a free recruitment service to help you hire the best candidate for your organisation from our talent pool and external advertising through social media and the national apprenticeship services website

If you are an employer and you would like to know more, please email or call 01332 387421

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Course Information Last Updated On: October 18, 2023 11:44 am