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Do You Tip Cat Groomers? [The Ultimate Tipping Guide]

Cats make beautiful pets in a wide range of fur types and colors. However, even the most lovely cat can find themselves in need of grooming from time to time. Taking a cat to the groomer can make cleaning up your pet a breeze, but how can you show thanks to your groomer? Do people tip cat groomers? If so, how much do they tip? Let’s find out.

So, do you tip cat groomers? When your cat needs the expert care of a professional groomer, you should make plans to tip if possible. Most cat owners who use a groomer show their appreciation with an added tip. Tipping a cat groomer is not a requirement to receive great service but is a means of showing appreciation for this particular service.  

Although cats are not often large animals, grooming one takes training and patience.

Being a groomer, especially to cats, is a lot more work than simply running a brush through a feline’s fur. 

Tipping is one such way you can acknowledge such work.

Of course, whether you can or should do this will depend greatly on the circumstances.

The following guide will help walk you through how you personally should approach it. 

Should I Tip The Cat Groomer?

Tipping your cat groomer is not a requirement, but most cat owners do choose to add a tip to their grooming payment. 

Anyone who has tried to bathe a cat, detangle their fur, trim their nails, or shave matted sections of cat hair can tell you that it is not a simple task. 

Cats are not always the most cooperative grooming clients, and groomers demonstrate both technical skill and patience when performing cat grooming. 

As such, a tip for cat grooming services is commonplace among cat owners.

Even though tipping is common, it is still a personal decision left up to each owner. 

If your cat is in need of grooming beyond what you can do on your own for their health and wellbeing, it is okay to take them to the groomer even if you are unable to pay a tip. 

While a quality groomer will appreciate a tip, they care about the animals they groom and will perform great work even for their base rates.

If you are unsure about whether or not you will tip your groomer, it is okay to wait and see your cat’s grooming results before making a final decision.

If you are trying to decide on whether to tip your groomer, you are probably wondering if they are expecting every owner to tip, how much of a tip you should give, and what is the best way to offer the tip. 

Let’s take a look at those factors now.

Do Cat Groomers Expect To Be Tipped?

Most cat groomers do not expect each client to tip for their services. Tips from owners are very common in the grooming industry because of the amount of professional training and skill involved, but groomers are also happy to work for the rates they charge upfront. 

Private groomers are able to set their own grooming rates, and groomers for larger companies are usually working for an agreed-upon wage. 

This means that your groomer is likely doing their financial planning around numbers that don’t include their tips. 

However, tips are often the way that groomers can afford to purchase and maintain high-quality tools, attend training to better their skills, and sometimes just reward themselves for spending long hours on their feet caring for the world’s pets.

How Much Should You Tip Your Cat Groomer?

The typical amount that is tipped for grooming services falls in the range of 15-20% of your grooming fees. This rate is the custom amount for tipping individuals in various service-related fields such as at restaurants. 

Usually, 15-20% is an amount people can easily afford while being large enough to be an impactful show of thanks for the work your groomer has done.

The benefit of tipping a percent of your grooming fee is that your final amount is easy to calculate and, unless your grooming needs drastically change, should be about the same amount every time. 

If you feel that 15-20% is too high, 10% is another easy to calculate option for your tip amount. 

Cat grooming rates average $50, with some places lower and some higher, so planning to spend $5-$10 on a tip for one cat’s grooming is a good idea.

Not everyone decides their tip amount using a percentage system. 

Some people pay a set tip amount based on exactly what grooming services they have done. 

They may tip $3 if they are only having a nail trim and $5 for a bathing service. 

If they have both during a visit, they will tip $8 for their cat’s grooming. 

The exact amount you tip can fluctuate from one visit to the next. 

You’ll likely want to consider things such as the grooming tasks your cat needs (Was it a full bath and brush out or just a quick nail trim?), the quality of your cat’s appearance when you pick them up, and the amount you can afford at the time of grooming.  

When you choose an amount and give it with a grateful heart, your groomer and cat will both be happy.

When To Tip Your Cat Groomer

The best time to tip your cat groomer is when you have seen them after their appointment. 

When you pick up your cat from the groomer, be sure to give them a good look over and ask the groomer any questions you have about the style or care they received. 

This also gives your groomer a chance to tell you anything important they may have noticed about your cat. 

Groomers are often the first to see cuts, sores, or parasites on pets and are great at helping owners identify and seek treatment for the issue. 

By paying after you pick up your cat, you know you are happy with the service you received. Paying at the end of the appointment is also convenient because this is usually the time that basic service fees are collected.

You can tip at other times, such as when you drop your cat off if you know you will not be able to pay when you pick up. 

This is especially true if you are not the person who will be picking your cat up, and you want to be certain your groomer receives a tip.

Do You Tip Your Cat Groomer Every Time?

The majority of people choose to tip their cat groomers after each appointment. Unless you have a caught with exceptionally long hair or that is being shown in cat shows, it is likely that your cat only needs a full-body grooming on an occasional basis. For this reason, tipping after each appointment is the standard among cat owners who choose to tip. 

It’s important to remember that even though tipping cat groomers is a common practice, it is an optional one. 

This means that you don’t have to tip your cat groomer every time. 

You could save your tipping for times when your groomer does a particularly exceptional job or when it is most financially smart for you as the owner.

Even if you do not regularly tip your cat groomer, there are times when a tip would be a very good gesture of gratitude.  

If your cat groomer fits you into their schedule last minute, if your cat is extremely difficult to safely groom, or your groomer observes and reports to you a health concern you hadn’t noticed before, a tip should be considered.

When You May Want To Tip Your Cat Groomer More

Even if you are a regular tipper, you may want to consider tipping more than normal if your cat groomer fits you into their schedule at the last minute, if your cat is aggressive when being groomed, or if your cat is extremely dirty or matted, which requires extra time and care from your groomer.

Honestly, most cats do a great job of keeping themselves clean, especially if they have short hair. 

This means that many owners only take their cats to be groomed if something has caused them to become much dirtier than normal or if their long hair has become noticeably matted. 

If you bring a cat to the groomer that you know is extremely dirty, your groomer will love helping you clean them up, but an increased tip for the extra time it takes to groom your cat would certainly be appreciated. 

In the realm of pet grooming, cats are often not the easiest client to work with. Even a friendly cat may become aggressive if they are not happy with being groomed. 

This is especially true if grooming is not a regular event for your cat. 

Cats might be smaller than dogs, but their claws mean business. 

If you know your cat was aggressive during grooming, increasing your tip shows how thankful you are for your groomer seeing the job through.

Groomers have busy schedules and spend hours a day on their feet. 

If your groomer is kind enough to fit you in at the last minute when your cat finds themselves unexpectedly in a mess, a higher tip than normal acknowledges their flexibility and customer service. 

How To Pay Your Cat Groomer A Tip

Paying your cat groomer a tip is best done in the same way you pay them for their grooming fees. If you pay with cash, you can add a few extra dollars along with a verbal thank you so that the groomer knows you intend the money to be a tip. When you pay with a credit card, you usually need to sign a receipt. At the bottom of the receipt should be a line for adding a tip.

Don’t hesitate to ask your cat groomer the way that they would prefer to receive a tip for a job well done. 

This is a great chance for your groomer to let you know the best way to tip them without feeling like they are demanding you to make one. 

Always clearly mark any tip you give so that your groomer knows you intended to pay them more than their requested fee.


Now that you know the ins and outs of tipping when it comes to cat grooming, you can decide what works best for you to show appreciation to your groomer. 

No matter the frequency or amount of your tips, most groomers just want to know that you love the looks of your cat, and the work they do is appreciated by the owners who bring in their pets.

Wondering who else you may need to tip, I’ve got you covered in the following guides: