Grooming Matters
Creating a More Peaceful Workspace
by Daryl Conner
Most pet groomers I know spend 40 hours a week or more at work. And since we invest such a sizeable chunk of time in our workspace, it is a kindness to ourselves to create a work environment that is as pleasant as possible. Working in a place that supports our physical and mental comfort makes our workday more enjoyable, and the positive effects are likely to spill over into other aspects of our lives.

To start, take your senses into consideration when trying to create a pleasant workspace.

Look around your grooming area. Are things cluttered and chaotic or tidy and serene? The saying “mess equals stress” is very accurate. What can you do to reduce clutter and streamline the way your surroundings appear? There are many websites (check out, books and programs available to help people organize their homes, but the principles can easily be applied to your workspace.

If you own your business, would revamping your color scheme help you enjoy your surroundings more? There has been much research done about how colors affect our moods. For instance, red creates a sense of urgency and yellow is uplifting. Would a clean coat of soothing paint help you enjoy your work more?

Take a moment to stop and listen during the middle of a busy day. Grooming can be loud. Barking dogs, high-velocity dryers, clippers and vacuums all create a stressful atmosphere for pets and people. There are clever ways to tuck vacuums and other noise-generating tools behind insulated baffles or walls to lower some of the levels. A creative carpenter could help you figure out how. Pay attention to ways to reduce barking sounds. Is there a way to rearrange crates and kennels that will keep loud barkers from being close to your work area?

What about background music? If you love heavy metal, it’s probably best to enjoy it during your downtime. Studies have shown that dogs are calmer and more apt to rest when classical music is played rather than rock, pop or metal.1 There are some soundtracks designed to be soothing. Check out Steven Halpern’s Chakra Suite. We play it when we have a stressful day and can almost feel the tension lessen as we listen.

What is the general smell of your grooming space? The odor of the environment affects not only us, but the pets we care for as well. Keeping your area scrupulously clean and letting fresh air in as much as possible will help battle the odors associated with pets. Diffusers with calming essential oils can be an excellent addition to help create a pleasant atmosphere, but educate yourself about the oils you use if you groom cats, as they can be sensitive to them.
How about temperature and humidity? OSHA recommends that the workplace temperature be kept between 68 and 76 degrees Fahrenheit.2 Of course, your comfort level may vary, but working in a place where the temperature feels just right is one way to lower your stress level.

Bathing dogs also creates a lot of humidity. Adding a quiet but efficient exhaust fan or dehumidifier to your area can make the space far more comfortable and improve the air quality.

Another thing to consider is the lighting you have in your space. Fluorescent lights are practical but can be hard on your eyes. In addition, the imperceptibly fast flicker can cause headaches in some people. Is it possible to switch out those fluorescent lights for something kinder? If not, special filters are available that tone down the harsh quality of the light they deliver.
Feng Shui
Would it be helpful to rearrange your area? You’ve probably heard about the ancient Chinese principles of Feng Shui, which is based on how energy flows through a space. Looking at the principles of Feng Shui and applying some to your workspace could help make it more enjoyable. For instance, your grooming table should be positioned so you are facing the entrance. This is referred to as the “power position.” There is lots of information available if you are interested in learning more about energy flow.
Is it possible to add plants to your grooming room? Studies show that plants help improve air quality by absorbing toxins.3 Beyond that, they can add beauty and tranquility to your environment.
Tools & Products
How about your tools? Because our work is so physical, supporting our bodies with properly designed ergonomic tools is vital to our comfort and safety. Do you have anti-fatigue mats in place to cushion your legs and feet for those long hours you spend standing? Have you tried sitting some of the time that you work? Stools such as the ones dental technicians use are comfortable and designed to maintain good work posture, and work well for groomers.
When you feel happy and comfortable in your work area, you can be a calmer version of yourself.
Even if you don’t own the space where you spend those long working hours, you can take steps to make your workspace more pleasant. When you feel happy and comfortable in your work area, you can be a calmer version of yourself. In addition, pets are sensitive to our moods and respond best to us grooming them when we are feeling serene.



  1. What Kind of Music Calms Dogs? PetMD.
  2. Kuligowski, K. (2022, August 24). How to Resolve the Office Temperature Debate. Business News Daily.
  3. The Benefits of Houseplants. The Sill.