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Dog Grooming Courses

"If you are going to do it properly, then do it properly at Dandini's" - Yvonne Lee, Student 2017


The Training Room at Dandini's

Portsmouth, Hampshire

Fancy learning how to groom your own dog?


Thinking about a career change?  


The Training Room offers a variety of courses in dog grooming.  These are well-structured, professional and quality assured by The Groomers Spotlight Training Academy and endorsed by Julie Harris Education 

Our dog grooming courses are run for the complete beginner to those wishing to brush up (pun intended!) on their grooming skills.  We aim to be as flexible as possible so that you can do anything from 2 days a week to 4 days a week allowing you to learn around your other commitments.   1 day a week courses are only suitable for those with previous experience.  We teach on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays throughout the year. 

We offer a variety of courses depending on your long term goals and how quickly you want to get there.  If you are certain that dog grooming is for you and are looking for a complete career change the longest course would be recommended.  This comprehensive 50 day course will be teaching you to the highest level of professional pet grooming and includes breed standard styling and hand-stripping.  It is an all in course to include everything you will need to become a Fully qualified Level 3 Stylist.   We have a shorter 32 day version of this course for those already working in the industry but who have yet to learn breed standard grooming and who want to become Fully qualified OR for those who have had no previous experience and want to learn pet grooming only. 

New for 2023 is our Introduction to grooming course aimed at those wanting a much shorter course and to start with the basics first.  On completion of this course you will have a great insight into being a dog groomer and skills to forward your career, a perfect start to your training.   

Lastly we have our one day pet owners course, for those who want to learn how to maintain their dogs haircut at home.  Not only will this save you money but it will allow the bond between you and your dog to get even greater.  


Why choose us?

  • Dandini's has been grooming dogs for over 50 years!  We are proud to say that we are the longest standing dog grooming salon in Portsmouth, Hampshire and across the South-East.  The knowledge handed down through the generations of groomers at Dandini's gives you access to an un-paralled wealth of information and expertise.  

  • We have a large and separate purpose built training facility on the same site as the salon  - this allows for quiet, uninterrupted sessions where there are no distractions and an environment that calmly lets you learn.

  • We have a maximum of ONLY THREE/FOUR students at any one time.   We pride ourselves on the attention and nurture given to our students.  We find that our smaller than usual class size is invaluable in making sure each student gets the individual attention they deserve.  We want each student to be personally supported throughout their training and we feel, the only way to make sure this is done, is to limit class sizes.  Due to this, a minimum of two qualified tutors are on hand the whole time the learner is grooming which ensures they leave ready to groom dogs confidently in a safe and professional manner.  In comparison to larger college situations where there is a much larger student to teacher ratio, we provide excellent value for money with consistent and thorough 1:1 training. 

  • Each training day is a full 8.5 hours which allows a student to groom two dogs per day.  

  • Alongside The Training Room, we have a fully functioning busy salon so that the reality of what it's really like to work in a salon can be experienced without it hampering your learning environment.   It also means that we can tap into a huge selection of breeds to ensure that students can be confident in all styles before they leave.  

  • All courses include Assistant training days in the main salon before starting the 1:1 Styling training in the classroom and there is further opportunity for Level 3 diploma students to gain competence in the workplace during and at the end of the course.  

  • All "Groom for a Living" courses include a Canine First Aid certified course run by the well renowned Julie Harris and an Emmi-pet workshop run by our own salon specialist Robyn Maloney. 

  • We can provide a nationally recognised and Ofqual regulated Level 3 qualification alongside any of our longer courses. This OCN (Open College Network) qualification is recognised in the industry, by potential employers and by future customers.  Level 3 diploma courses include a years FREE subscription to The Groomers Spotlight. 

  • This qualification can also be Fast tracked and taken over a shorter period of days by dog groomers who wish to gain a recognised qualification. 

  • We are one of the only schools in the country to be endorsed and Internally quality assured by Julie Harris -The country's top expert in grooming education 

Who will be teaching you?

These courses are run by FULLY QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED dog grooming tutors.  Caroline, the head tutor, has over 17 years experience of working as a professional dog groomer and building up the existing business to what it is today.  

Dandini's is a very successful salon and well known for quality.  Caroline has developed her skill as a teacher through training staff to maintain this exceptional reputation.  She has groomed dogs for demonstrations at seminars and grooming shows and is proud to have trained two of her staff members to place first at national pet grooming competiton's.  It was a natural progression for Caroline to open The Training Room so that she could extend this training to external students, which she did in 2016.  She recognised the need in the area for quality dog grooming tuition as she found that there were few courses on the market that gave the student the structure or experience that she would expect from a dog grooming course that professed to train students to be ready for the workplace.  She would always suggest the longer courses in The Training Room to a prospective student wanting a career change, however she does understand that this is not always practical or financially viable.  As a result she has devised courses of varying levels and price points so that they can be accessible to all but still ensuring that every student leaves ready to go out and work confidently and safely at the level that they have trained.  


She is very proud of her students who are all now successful and competent dog groomers in their own right, running successful businesses in Europe, across the UK and locally in Hampshire.

Groom for a Living

Course Information


We ask anyone wishing to do a course with us to attend a taster day so that anyone thinking of committing to a longer course is absolutely sure that dog grooming is what they want to do.  This will include some hands-on experience in the main salon, bathing and drying with a grooming assistant and watching the experienced dog groomers at work, asking them questions and getting a feel for what it is like to be a dog groomer in a commercial environment.  The afternoon is spent in The Training Room working with another student.  The tutor will then explain the course structure and recommend which course would be suitable.  Taster days cost £120 and are refunded off the cost of a 17, 32 or 50 day course.  All equipment is provided for you during your course with a professional set of scissors included in the course costs.  There will be at least 5 days guided home-study for students to complete for all our courses, but this is additional to the 17, 32 or 50 days practical training. 

17 day 'Introduction to Grooming' Course 

Suitable for those with no previous dog grooming experience

You will learn: 

  • Bathing and drying 

  • Nail trimming

  • Preparation of the coat for styling

  • Clipping and scissoring 

  • Basic Pet Styling

  • Maintenance of equipment

  • Health and Safety

What you get:

  • 2 days salon training

  • 15 days styling training

  • 8.5 hours training a day from 9am - 6pm

  • At least 25 dogs to groom!

  • Basic Scissor set



  • £2750.00 - to include a Course manual and OCN Level 3 Certificate on completion 

32 Day 'Groom for a Living' Course 

For those wishing to gain a Level 3 diploma this course is only suitable for those with previous dog grooming experience, an OCN Level 3 certificate or a City and Guilds Level 2  qualification

 (student must be clipping and have basic scissor skills for acceptance on to this course)

You will learn: 

  • Bathing and drying 

  • Nail Trimming

  • Preparation of the coat for styling

  • Clipping and scissoring 

  • Pet styling

  • Breed standard styling (Level 3 Diploma)

  • Hand-stripping of wire and silk coats (Level 3 Diploma)

  • Maintenance of equipment

  • Health and Safety 

  • Canine First Aid 

  • Business Advice 

  • Customer Care

What you get:

  • A minimum of 5 days Grooming Assistant training and then 25 days Styling Training.

  • 8.5 hours training a day from 9am - 6 pm

  • At least 45 dogs to groom!

  • Professional Scissor set (RRP £242, upgrade to full kit possible)

  • First Aid with Julie Harris RRP £85 ; 10am - 4pm 

  • Emmi-pet Teeth cleaning Workshop RRP £80 ; 10-2.30pm 

  • Unlimited work placement days to groom dogs and gain competence in the workplace 

  • Continual support for the rest of your career with monthly Zoom sessions.

  • The Groomers spotlight membership for 1 year (RRP £90 - OCN L3 diploma students only)

  • Potential job prospects in affiliated grooming salons                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Price:               £4800 - to include a Course manual and Certificate on completion PLUS either Level 3 certificate (no previous experience) OR Level 3 Diploma (for those with previous experience or a level 2 qualification)

50 Day 'Groom for a Living' Level 3 Diploma Course

From Novice to Professional - Suitable for those with no previous experience

You will learn: 

  • Bathing and drying 

  • Nail trimming

  • Preparation of the coat for styling

  • Clipping and scissoring 

  • Pet styling and breed standard styling

  • Hand-stripping of wire and silk coats

  • Maintenance of equipment

  • Health and Safety 

  • Canine First Aid 

  • Business Advise 

  • Customer Care

What you get:

  • A minimum of 10 days Grooming Assistant Training and 38 days Styling Training.

  • 8.5 hours training a day from 9am - 6pm

  • At least 70 dogs to groom!. 

  • Professional Scissor set RRP £242, upgrade to full kit possible

  • First Aid with Julie Harris RRP £85 ; 10am -4pm 

  • Emmi-pet Teeth cleaning Workshop, RRP £80 ; 10-2.30pm 

  • Unlimited work placement days to groom dogs and gain competence in the workplace

  • Continual support for the rest of your career with monthly group Zoom sessions. 

  • The Groomers spotlight membership for 1 year (RRP £90 OCN L3 students only)

  • Potential job prospects in affiliated grooming salons 



  • £5750 - to include a Course manual and Certificate of completion.

  • £6500 - to include a Course manual and Certificate of completion PLUS Level 3 OCN Diploma.

For Groomers

Fast track Level 3 and further training:

  • FAST TRACK OCN Level 3 Diploma - Qualification ONLY - £1250.00

  • Top-up and breed specific training days for people already grooming - £200 per day 

  • Cat Grooming : Training for professional groomers only - £250 per day

Get in Touch
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For the Pet owner

Learn how to groom your own dog 

What you will learn:

  • Health checking your dog and what to look out for.

  • How to clip your dogs nails, clean ears and clip hygiene area and pads. 

  • Bathing and drying and preparation of the coat to include de-knotting techniques and an understanding of different tools and what they should be used for.

  • An introduction into clipping and scissoring techniques to create your dogs pets style

  • Safe handling and approach.


What you get:

  • Two qualified teachers to just 2/3 students from 9.30 AM - 4.30 PM

  • Your dog groomed to a high standard with the help of a tutor.

  • A course manual and starter kit worth £20


Price :  

£250 - to include course manual and starter kit


4th September

30th October 

20th November 


Daniella Liddiard, Two Peas in a Pod Pet Care , Lowford

100000% would recommend Caroline, Columbya and Sarah at The training Room (as well as the rest of the team)!

I started the Dandini's Level 3 training course completely blind to dog grooming, with no experience - yet somehow one year later I am a confident groomer opening my own dog grooming salon!

The attention to detail throughout the entire course is exceptional, with no aspect missed or glided over.  The Dandini's Team put their heart and soul into training their students to ensure by the end of your course, you'll not only be grooming with confidence but also with skill and a true understanding of the grooming process / the dogs safety throughout. 

Although it was sometimes testing and overwhelming experience (you're learning an entirely new skill) it's an experience I would do all over again thanks to the Dandini's team. 

Truly cannot thank them enough for passing on their years of experience so that others can fulfill a careeer in dog grooming.  Thank you !!

Located on the outskirts of Portsmouth we are easily accessible for anyone in Hampshire and the surrounding counties such as Surrey or Sussex, being mintues from the A3 and M27.  We have students commute easily from Fareham, Winchester, Southampton, Emsworth, Chichester, Petersfield, Liss, Hayling Island and Guildford. 

We have also had students from overseas and have comfortable home from home on-site accomodation for those needing to stay away from home whilst training. 

Why not come and see us and find out why we are the best people to help you make that all important career change.

Get in touch...

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