Cat & Dog Groomers

Parent Q&A

  • Dog Groomer

    (6 replies)

    Hi all, we just moved to Berkeley and are looking for a recommended groomer for our Goldendoodle. She's a bit rough around the edges lately (pandemic hair) so looking for someone who is skilled and gentle.

    Thank you!

    RE: Dog Groomer ()

    Lena at All About the Dogue is fantastic! Knowledable and kind, it’s the only place my giants dogs will go. Welcome to Berkeley!

    RE: Dog Groomer ()

    We have an Australian Shepard who is pretty shy and hasn't loved going to the groomer.  We have taken her to a variety of places, and she has seemed more relaxed once we started going to Spa Go.   We like it there -- they are organized, easy to make an appointment on-line, and importantly, you have an appointment for a set amount of time so your pup doesn't have to spend more time there than necessary.  Recommend them!

    RE: Dog Groomer ()

    Mickey from Spa on the Go. She is great, on Broadway in Rockridge

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Dog Groomers

August 2008

I would appreciate hearing about your good or bad experiences with specific dog groomers (especially mobile groomers) in the El Cerrito/Albany/Berkeley area. The recommendations on the website all seem to be several years old, although the names that seem to come up frequently online are Dogs Best Friend, Dogs by Dianne, Kutz for Mutz and Lena Swann. Any thoughts on these or other groomers? -Mom of a skiddish dog

My dog isn't particularly skittish, but I will offer my whole-hearted recommendation for Lena Swann grooming in Emeryville. She has groomed my large, very hairy golden retriever a few times and done a wonderful job.

Try Wizard of Paws in Berkeley near Fourth Street. Carol, the owner, is terrific and she has a great staff. anon

Oct 2006

Does anyone have a good dog groomer in Alameda, or nearby? We have a standard poodle and have been driving her out to Lafayette for grooming, which is just too far. I checked the BPN archives, but there was nothing recent on this topic. Thanks! Monica

Kay-Cee in San Leandro does a great job and is reasonably priced. Her phone number is 510-569-1167 Amy

Our 2 Portuguese water dogs are groomed at Four Paws grooming in Walnut Creek(2818 North Main) phone#925-287-8131. The positive: the owner, Sarah Weyland owns and shows water dog and does a wonderful job grooming our dogs. The negative: the dogs stay at her ''salon''the whole day and are generally caged. I assume this is because she is so busy. The fees are similar to what I have paid in the past. CS

March 2005

Can anyone recommend a good dog groomer for a puppy? It'll be her first grooming experience and we hope for it to be a good one. Also, what are the rates like? And lastly, has anyone tried bringing their dog to PetSmart or PetCo? What was their experience like? How did you like it? Thanks!

I take my dog to a fantastic groomer, Lena Swann, in Emeryville (right at the Berkeley border). Her love for dogs is obvious, in fact, her storefront is set up more like a day care center than a grooming shop. She charges $35 to groom my toy poodle. I've paid up to $50 other places. Her address is 1331-B 61st St, Emeryville. Her phone is 510-653-1691. Jan

We've used Petco-El Cerrito a couple of times for grooming for our one-year old dog. I think it costs $35-$40. Our dog seemed out of sorts after the first grooming. We had different groomers each time, and neither did a great job. So we feel ambivalent at best about Petco. I think we'll try someone in Berkeley who runs their own grooming service next time. I look forward to seeing other recommendations from your posting. Phil C.

I've taken our chocolate lab to Petco, Wizard of Paws, Dogs by Dianne and Dog's Best Friend. He gets groomed once each month. We generally take him to Petco because it's the cheapest and the easiest to get an appointment. However, I think Dog's Best Friend is the most professional and does the best job. It's like night and day when we get our dog groomed there. We've even taken our cats there! How much you will pay depends on the size and breed of your dog. We haven't been to Dog's Best Friend in a long, long time (we always call at the last minute and they are booked early), but when we did, it was about $40 and we also give a 20% tip. Our dog is big, but doesn't require any fancy cutting and styling. We pay about $30 at Petco. They do a pretty good job. Dog's Best Friend really is excellent. They are on San Pablo in Albany, just south of Brighton Ave. Anon

We take our older dog (not a puppy any more!) to Dogs by Dianne, who is in Richmond, on the Arlington. She and her staff have been great with our dog. I have also had my cats and dog groomed by The Cat's Meow/Dog's Best Friend on San Pablo in Albany. I don't remember how much it cost to have the cats groomed. The dog, who has poodle-like hair and requires a lot of grooming, runs anywhere from $55-75 depending on how matted and long her fur is (price varies due to the amount of time it takes to brush/clip the dog). Dog's Best Friend was okay, but it seemed pricier, and I was always able to get an appointment when I needed one from Dogs by Dianne, which wasn't the case at Dog's Best Friend, so we've become regulars with Dianne. Once several years ago, when desperate, I went to a PetSmart. It was cheap, but the cut wasn't the greatest. Think SuperCuts for dogs... I think that if you find someone you like there, then it can work for you. I was a little nervous about leaving my dog at PetSmart, as I couldn't tell how well attended she was in my absence, while at the groomers, I knew that there was always staff around and that they seemed to pay a lot of attention to the dogs. Donna

May 2004

Good and kind dog groomer wanted Please recommend a good groomer who is both good at what he/she does and sweet to dogs. I have a large mix long hair dog. I appreciate your recommendation or any input. teresa

I am a professional dog handler who shows poodles and know Nancy who owns ''DOG's BEST FRIEND'' on San Pablo. She has a fantastic reputation as a groomer, if not the best in the Bay area. Her shop number is 526-7762 Mike

Dec 2003

Does anyone have any experience with dog groomers ''Kutz for Mutz?''. They are on University Avenue in Berkeley. I do not see any reference to them on the BPN. Thanks Harlan

I have been using Kutz for Mutz to groom my two terriers for the past year. I've been very happy with Kutz for Mutz--my dogs look great, it's not difficult to get an appointment, and they're always ready on time. I switched from another groomer after ten years because it was always too difficult to get an appointment, the dogs were never ready on time (and would be stuck in a kennel from 9 in the morning until 6 at night), and the customer service was poor. Ivy

May 2002

I'm looking for a gentle dog groomer in the El Cerrito/Albany/No. Berkeley area for my long-haired small therapy dogs. I've already checked groomers on the website but need different suggestions. I'd like to avoid long kenneling time, harsh grooming techniques or excessively busy locations. Perhaps an independent groomer? Price is less relevant than the right person. Smiley's people

I take our dog to Wizzard of Paws in Berkeley (just off 6th Street). Carol, the owner, is very nice. She has a fenced yard which reduces the amount of crate time. My dog has had some strong reactions to other places, but he does just fine at Wizzard and Carol always makes him look great. Wizzard of Paws: 526-2115. Jen

I highly recommend Dogs by Dianne. My dog is not difficult to groom, but Dianne is good about getting her out early in the afternoon. My friend took in her Welsh terrier, which has special grooming needs, and said Dianne did a great job. Dianne is not in her shop every day, so you might want to schedule on a day that she's there. The shop is on Arlington Blvd. in Richmond and the phone number is 236-0588. Nancy


Anyone have any recommendations on dog groomers? This will be the first time going to the dog groomers and I don't know what to expect. I've got a medium long haired dog with an undercoat. What should I expect to pay and how long does the dog stay at the groomers? My dog doesn't like to be brushed much but tolerates it when coerced/bribed to hold still. Will this be a problem? Especially interested in the Castro Valley and El Cerrito/Albany/Berkeley areas. I checked the Parents web site for info, but there aren't any recommendations for the Castro Valley area and few for Berkeley.

I highly recommend Wizard of Paws in BErkeley. I have a long haired, thick furred, large, arthritic dog and they look after him fine there (don't force him to stand for too long). I've tried other places and Bearly has come back smelling like smoke, sore from standing, or with an uneven cut. I pay 75$ for Bearly's's a lot but is comparable to other places and the quality and care at Wizard of Paws is top-notch. Expect to drop your dog off in the morning and pick him or her up in the afternoon. Nancy

We have been taking our cocker spaniel to Dog's Best Friend and the Cat's Meow on San Pablo in Albany for a couple of years. Their rate is based on time spent on the animal so they will not give a price up front. Our dog is usually about $48, but dogs with a lot of tangles may be about $60. The owner's dog is a national show champion and the owner's husband is a veterinarian. They are very thorough with our dog: bath, fur cut, nails, ears, rear end.

We also took our dog to a woman in Richmond named Lindy who only charged only $25 and did a great job on the dog, but because his ear canals are bad she didn't want to touch them -- good judgement but then we still had to take him somewhere else to have his ears cleaned. I don't have Lindy's phone number with me but maybe someone else has used her. H.D.

I have a golden retriever that I have been taking to Dogs By Diane (524-9779) on Solano Ave. in Berkeley for several years. Because my dog has so much hair and sheds so much, I decided to pay to have someone else groom her on a regular basis.

I like Diane, the owner of Dogs By Diane, very much. She does a good job and is personable. Given Diane's many years of experience, I'm sure that she knows how to handle dogs that don't want to be groomed. Your dog most likely will be at the groomers for several hours, especially if you take your dog on a Saturday.

Probably you can expect to pay $30 to $50 depending on the size of your dog and the condition and length of your dog's hair. Diane _is_ closing her Solano Ave. shop and moving to a shop on Arlington Ave. in El Cerrito some time this summer.

There are a couple other places in Berkeley/Albany that I have no experience with. One is Solano Pets on Solano Ave. in Berkeley. And the other is on San Pablo Ave. in Albany, next to BlockBuster Videos. I forget the name, but probably you can find it in a phone book. It offers both full grooming services and also a place where you can bath and dry your dog yourself. I have taken my dog there (to bath her myself), but it's really hard to get her in the tub (she weighs 75 lbs). But if your dog is not too heavy, and if you don't mind bathing your dog yourself, you might consider it because you'll save money (I think it's still $15 to use their facilities), and won't have to worry about clogging your plumbing with your dog's hair.

Plus you can use a dryer to dry your dog after bathing it.


expect to pay about $40.00 in the Berkeley area for grooming a medium sized dog with an undercoat (approximately like a chow or keeshond) cturtlesrus

To the person looking for a dog groomer, I can wholeheartedly recommend Dianne at Dogs by Dianne on Solano Ave. in Albany. She has been wonderful--kind, loving, yet firm--with our rather difficult dog, Buster. She feeds him a liver treat after each toenail clipped! We started going to Dianne after a terrible experience with someone at Dog's Best Friend on San Pablo. Good luck! Barbara

2000 I'm looking for recommendations for a dog groomer. We have a long haired dog and get her trimmed about every 3 months. I have been to some groomers who insist on bringing her in every month. Thank you kindly.

I've been taking my dogs to Dog's Best Friend for the last 15 years and have nothing but good things to say about them. Nancy, the owner, is one of the best groomers around and has only the best folk working for her. The store is on San Pablo Ave in Albany close to the El Cerrito border. Phone number 526-7762.

Without hesistation, I recommend WIZARD OF PAWS in Berkeley. It's behind a house in a little alley off Jones Street below 6th. Telephone 526-2115. Tell Carol that Freckles sent you!

Cat Groomers

May 2009

Can anyone recommend a good cat groomer? We typically do it ourselves but are finding the hair to be overwhelming this year. We're thinking of lion cuts for the summer, and are hoping to find someone affordable since we have two cats... Hair, hair, everywhere

We bring our persian cat to A Dog's Best Friend & The Cat's Meow in Berkeley every year for his lion cut. Here is their website: Address is: 525 San Pablo Ave (between Brighton Ave & Clay St) Albany, CA 94706 (510) 526-7762 They do a great job and most importantly my cat does not seem to mind going there and getting his hair cut. The people who work there are really nice. We have been to several other places and this is my favorite, I won't go anywhere else. Their prices seem competitive compared to the other groomers around. Natalie

I just had my long haired cat bathed, groomed and he got the Lion Cut---all this for 66 bucks! At VCA pet hospital at 4501 Shattuck Ave Oakland, CA 94609 (510) 654-8375 My cat looks wonderful and he is feeling great. I recommend them highly. all for cat grooming

Oct 2006

We have a 22 lb long haired cat who is matted on his stomach where he won't let us touch him. Does anyone know of a place that will bathe and groom cats. We have tried Dog's Best Friend, but they did not want to bathe him and just tidied up his ''hygenic area'' at great expense. The Solano Pet shop did a great job, but they are no longer in business. Thank you. jmz

Try Cuts for Mutz, The owner is a bit wacky (See ''Best in Show'') but he does a nice job and will bathe the cat. I have a Persian and I just have him shaved every 4 to 6 months. It makes him very happy and me too. Good luck Keley

I just took a cat of mine to VCA on Shattuck for bathing. They did a great job, for $35.00, and clip the nails as well. I think they charge a little extra for matting. You drop them off in the morning and pick them up in the late afternoon. cat lady

Oct 2003

Can anyone recommend a local cat groomer? We have an elderly long-haired cat who is in desperate need of help. We used to be able to keep his fur unmatted simply by regularly brushing and combing him. Not anymore...he's a tangled mess, poor baby. We took the kitty to a groomer last year when we had this same problem but we won't take him back there again: the cat's rear legs & hips were physically traumatized by the experience -- he could barely make it up/down the stairs or jump on the couch for several days after. Help!

We take our Maine Coon Cat, whose long hair tends to get tangled over time, to the Solano Pet Shop in Berkeley. I started taking him there after being disenchanted with another place. They had to shave him extensively the first time (he was really tangled), but since then we've been able to keep him tangle free. I don't know the name of the groomer, but she does a good job. Their address is 1575 Solano and their phone number is 525-4190. Roger