Keeping your Salon Germ Free

We all know the importance of keeping a clean house at home, so it is no different from your salon. The importance of cleaning and sanitation in the salon will keep your business looking professional because it will not only look clean but smell clean also. We all want to work in a healthier environment so we need to take the time out to reduce cross contamination. Not only will this provide a clean and safe workplace, equipment will also last longer as they are maintained properly.


So, what are the concerns?

Within grooming, there are four different types of infectious agents that fall into two categories. The two categories are zoonosis and contagion. A zoonosis infection is transmitted between species, such as between people and dogs or dogs and cats. A contagion is species specific.

The four main types of infectious agents are:

  • Viruses
  • Bacteria
  • Parasites
  • Fungi

Viruses are small microorganisms that live and reproduce in living cells, as well as have the ability to mutate. This ability to change makes it harder to treat. Rabies is a zoonotic agent and a contagion is Kennel Cough.


Bacteria is caused by bacterial agents. An example of a zoonosis is a cat scratch fever and an example of a contagion is Kennel Cough. There are different types of kennel cough that can be either bacterial or viral.


Parasites are an infectious agent that requires a host to survive. A zoonosis is a flea where a contagion is lice.


The last on the list is Fungi. These infectious agents are created by fungal agents and are predominately zoonotic. The most common fungus is mainly ringworm.


How are these infectious agents carried?

There are several ways that these agents can be carried. In order for these agents to be transmitted, there must be contact.


  1. YOU – The bottom of your shoes can bring in any infectious agents from outside to the inside of your shop. Some groomers will wear shoe coverings or will have a spare pair of shoes or clogs that will only be used in the salon.
  2. Direct Contact – This is the physical connection between you and the pet or between pets. An example of this is when you pet the dog, two pets rubbing together or bites and scratches.
  3. Indirect Contact – This contact is called Biological. These agents are carried through blood, urine, dander, feces, and hair. The spread of these agents can come through brushes, combs, blades, towels or even contaminated shampoo.
  4. Airborne – This is the hardest way to control as air is all around you.
  5. Waterborne – If you have water sitting for a period of time it grows bacteria. the can happen in your recirculator if you use one, diluted shampoos and conditioners. It can also grow in the careless storing of undiluted products that are near the tub.


How can we spread an infectious disease?

There are four factors that play a role. The first is the overall health of the pet or person. If a pet or human has a suppressed immune system, they are more likely to contract an infirmity. The second factor is personal sanitary habits. Washing hands in between pets remove the biologicals. Hair, urine, dander, feces, and blood are all common vectors for transmission. The third is the cleaning and disinfecting protocols of a facility. The fourth factor would be to have a policy in place to not groom obviously sick pets. Send them home before they have a chance to infect your facility. Keep in mind that a contagious pet may not present symptoms.


How to keep the salon germ free?

There are many ways that you may already do to keep your salon clean and germ-free. Here is our simple and easy to follow tips to keeping your salon germ free:


  • Clean in between grooms. When you are finished the groom you may vacuum around the areas used to clear any hair or other deposits left behind. Collect all tools and place them in a UV sanitizer or barbicide when not in use or after use. Used towels or snoods should be kept in a laundry basket to be washed and cleaned at the end of the day. Wash down the bath after use so there is no hair left behind from the last groom.
  • End of day clean. Once you are finished up for the day, it is the best practice to clean and wipe down all product bottles that was used throughout the day. If one of your bottles is completely emptied and you want to use it again, disinfect it and dry it out before you refill it. If you use combs, brushes, and mats, place them in the tub and clean them out and rinse thoroughly. After clean down the tub to remove anything that has been left behind. Blades and clip-on’s are best cleaned with a UV sanitizer or Clipper blade wash. Empty bins and wash the floor with a cleaner and disinfectant. Towels are washed and disinfected. Clean cages inside and out with a cleaner and disinfectant.
  • End of the week clean. In the addition to your normal day-to-day clean, we recommend that you perform and deeper clean. Wash the filters in your dryer and A/C, clean all bins that are used, walls and windows.
  • Quarterly clean.  You can do this every quarter or every month where you see fit. Take out a full day and gut out the shop so you can clean it top to bottom. Do a thorough clean with 10% bleach instead of your gentler disinfectant.


Please take the time and read up about the different infectious agents that can be carried and passed on. Take the time to learn the importance of keeping your facility clean and free of biologicals, not to groom sick pets, proper storage of supplies and equipment, and cleaning and disinfecting routines.