The first businesses to achieve the Quality Assurance Standard for Groomers have been announced by the Pet Industry Federation. Now proudly displaying their QAS certification, these grooming businesses have passed the rigorous inspection and testing process to ensure the knowledge of their staff, as well as their health and safety procedures, business practices and animal welfare policies are up to scratch.

‘We are delighted with the calibre of businesses who are paving the way with the Quality Assurance Standard,’ said Nigel Baker, Chief Executive of the Pet Industry Federation. ‘In the absence of regulation, it is refreshing to find groomers eager and enthusiastic to fly the flag for this scheme. The Federation has developed this Standard in very close collaboration with Dogs Trust, PDSA and the British Dog Groomers’ Association. The work put in by all parties is proving invaluable as the take up increases.

‘Participants have carefully studied the online library of resources, making use of the policies and information provided, and our team have found them extremely responsive to suggestions for improvement during the auditing process. This demonstrates that the supportive nature of this process is effective: groomers are benefitting from having their existing knowledge corroborated as well as refining their businesses through what they are learning.’

K9 Shine Pet Grooming Centre in Whitley Bay, Tyne & Wear is one of the first businesses to achieve the Quality Assurance Standard. Its proprietor, Ruth Webb, was ‘chuffed to bits’ at the news: ‘I’m so pleased for my girls who have worked very, very hard,’ she commented. ‘It’s great to have recognition for the effort and determination that we’ve put into providing a good service for our customers and their dogs.’

Ruth found the audit to be a positive experience: ‘It was more terrifying thinking about it than the actual day itself. [The auditor] was lovely, she put us at ease, she was very thorough, she really did go through every single point on her list to check. I think the Quality Assurance Scheme will reassure the public that they are coming somewhere where their animals will be properly looked after.’

Nicky Mills who runs her own business in Heathfield in East Sussex, is also proud to have attained the Standard. ‘I’ve proved that you can still be really top notch and professional even operating from home,’ she said. ‘People need to know it’s not as scary as it seems. It is achievable and it really promotes animal welfare.

‘I’m hoping being Quality Assured will bring me some good quality customers, people who want to have their dogs groomed regularly and want the best for their animals. Those are the kind of customers you want really, people who don’t mind spending a bit more money.’

The Quality Assurance Standard scheme is open to all groomers, provided they are members of the British Dog Grooming Association. To sign up to the scheme, visit