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Category: Groomer Interviews

How I Make Six Figures Playing with Dog Hair: 10 Step Guide to Start Your Pet Grooming Business

Janelle Russell is the owner of Chateau 4 Paws Pet Spa, located in Fayetteville, GA. Twelve years ago, Janelle opened her shop and is still going strong today! Last year, Janelle made her publishing debut with her book, "How I Make Six Figures Playing with Dog Hair: 10 Step Guide to Start Your Pet Grooming Business. " In her book, Janelle highlights how she started her journey in the Pet Industry and how she created a path to lead her to optimize work life balance, while maintaining success. We caught up with Janelle to see if she'd drop some gems from the favorite parts of her book for her fellow grooming community and here's what she had to say!

Hi, My Name is Janelle Russell:

Owner of Chateau 4 Paws Pet Spa located in Fayetteville, GA. I started my company in 2010 when I was laid off my corporate job. I didn’t have any experience or knowledge of the pet grooming business other than my extreme love for dogs. But once I was open and running, I quickly saw I needed to be hands on and truly learn the business inside and out. I quickly had to teach myself how to groom because my business depended on it. 

Why I Created This Book:

Over the years I would meet so many people who would ask me how they could start a pet grooming business or why I started. Once the book opportunity was presented to me, it was easy to just speak about my journey into the pet industry. This book is for anyone who is looking to start their pet business. In this easy-to-read book, I give you 10 steps that I feel are crucial to get you started. My goal was to make the information I’m giving you so simple that it won’t overwhelm you while reading and planning. Today, enjoy my top three favorite chapters (or what I call "phases") in my book, How I Make Six Figures Playing with Dog Hair: 10 Step Guide to Start Your Pet Grooming Business

In This Book You’ll Discover:

- What is required for you to get started 

- How to get funding for your dog grooming business 

- How to maximize costs

- What you’ll need to have in place before you take your first client 

Phase One: Vision 

Everyone will have a vision for their life, some will execute theirs and some will fail. For me, my vision for my life changed so many times. By the time I figured I wanted to open a pet salon, I wasted a couple of years and felt old entering the Pet Industry. 

With your vision, you should be able to see how and where you want your business to be. Do you want to be a mobile groomer or have a salon? What’s your business name? Logo design? Colors? This step can be very overwhelming; however, it should be exciting once you see your vision coming to life! Don’t get discouraged if you hit a stumbling block. Things will not always go as planned but stay on the course and remain focused on your goals and dreams! 

Phase Two: Research 

Research is taking your vision to the next level. After dreaming up a great vision of what you want your business to be, the research phase is often the first roadblock for many people. It’s not enough to just have an awesome idea, you must lay the foundation. When you start researching, you’re taking the first step of confidence towards making your vision a reality. 

In this phase for example if you want to start a pet business in a salon, your research should consist of researching location, your competitors, your pricing, looking over your lease and modifying it to your liking. You will also need to create your EIN, register your business with the state you’re in, check zoning requirements and apply for your permits 

Phase Three: Funding

In the research phase, you should’ve figured out exactly how much money you need to make your vision come to life. It essentially depends on you and how you see your business. When I started my business in 2010, I was just let go from my corporate job. I took my 401k and asked my parents to match it. I then asked my uncle to match that. And that’s how I was able to fund my business. 

Depending on the amount you need for your business maybe getting a credit card or line of credit will help you if you don’t have money saved up. Securing a business credit card, is a helpful way to keep your personal and business expenses separate and establish your business credit file.

Many vendors also offer short-term financing with a few requirements in the form of “net 30 accounts.” These accounts allow you to purchase products from them and defer payments 30 days later. 

If I could give you one important piece of advice always keep at least $5,000 to $10,000 in a reserved savings account. This is your emergency account. If you don’t have it start saving with a little amount and work, yourself up to this. For every client you service take $10.00 and put it into your savings. You’ll be surprised how much you can save if you stay focused and discipline!

In Closing:

Over the past 11 years I have experienced so many trials and tribulations along with multiple achievements being an entrepreneur. I want this book to help you avoid my hiccups I experienced during my journey.

Starting a pet grooming business can be stressful, however the daily rewards are worth it. It takes patience to deal with pets everyday along with their parents. Set your shop rules and boundaries as soon as possible because you will quickly see customers will try and run over you. You know what’s best for your business! Stay focused, take time off and enjoy yourself away from the business, get monthly massages to take care of yourself and charge your worth plus tax! Remember: You got this! The hardest step is taking the first step! I hope this book brings you much success and the start of financial freedom that everyone deserves while being their own BOSS!! Order your copy of How I Make Six Figures Playing with Dog Hair: 10 Step Guide to Start Your Pet Grooming Business today!