You can call me Fuddy Duddy. You can call me Party Pooper. This Halloween, like every Halloween, I find myself put off by the effort, and money, we Americans put into dressing up our dogs for the occasion.
In trying to figure out why I feel that way, I can pin down four reasons.
One is the annoyance, and safety risk, elaborate costumes can cause for dogs. Two is that our dogs, though they might register their displeasure, don’t get to vote on being dressed up solely for the amusement of ourselves. Three is we’re tinkering, if only for a night, with something that’s already perfect. Dogs don’t need costumes any more than Mona Lisa needs a makeover.
And four is the pipedreamy thought that the $300 million we spend on costumes for pets every year could do a lot of good if it could somehow be funneled to some worthy dog-related cause.
A not-overly-elaborate costume, worn by a dog for a few minutes, doesn’t bother me. But we tend to take things to extremes when we get into decorating mode — resulting in using dyes to make them look like other animals, or, as in the case above, TV characters.
“Creative dog groomer” Catherine Opson appeared on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” Tuesday night, showcasing five of her designs — a dog transformed into a koi pond, one dyed to resemble a leopard, one zombie, one depicting nearly the entire cast of Sesame Street, and another depicting characters from the Simpsons.
Her work is impressive, and a small part of me thinks it’s kinda cool. She uses safe dyes, and the dogs, at least while on air, didn’t seem too humiliated (though they were mostly poodles).
But the larger part of me (and I’m not referring to my stomach) can’t help but feel a little troubled by what seems our increasing tendency to, more and more elaborately, decorate our dogs.
Every October, the news media, websites and blogs go nuts when it comes to costumed dogs, promulgating more of the activity. (ohmidog! is proud to be the only dog blog in the galaxy that has made it, until now, all the way to Halloween without doing so.)
If there is any creature that is entertaining and endearing enough just as it is, it is a dog. If there’s any creature that doesn’t need a makeover, it’s a dog. If there’s any creature we should be able to accept, savor and celebrate just as it is, it’s a dog.
Posted by John Woestendiek October 31st, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: 300 million, americans, amusement, animal welfare, animals, behavior, catherine opson, characters, costumes, creative groomer, decorate, decorating, dog, dogs, dyeing, dyes, entertainment, grooming, halloween, jimmy kimmel, jimmy kimmel live, koi pond, leopard, money, pets, sesame street, simpsons, species, spend, the barking dead, zombies
Folks in China may be going overboard decorating their dogs as wild animals, but leave it to America to take the bizarre practice of decorating dogs and turn it into a TV series.
“Extreme Poodles” will air on TLC, premiering this Sunday at 9 p.m.
The Today Show aired a segment on the new program today, featuring three highly defensive dog decorators who maybe need to get a new hobby.
According to them, the dog’s just love it — soaking up the attention while soaking up the dyes.
Posted by John Woestendiek June 9th, 2010 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, decorate, decorating, dog, dogs, dye, dyeing, extreme poodles, news, ohmidog!, pets, television, tlc, today show, video
In what’s being described as the latest pet craze in China, dogs are being groomed and dyed to resemble other animals.
You can probably guess what we — being proponents of letting dogs be dogs –think of this. As if humanizing weren’t bad enough, now we’re subjecting them to tiger-izing and panda-izing?
Visitors recently gathered at a local pet market in Central China’s Zhengzhou city to view and photograph dogs who’d been trimmed and painted to resemble pandas and Siberian tigers, according to a report in the Montreal Gazette.
China has also been big on dyeing dogs unnatural colors. Both fads are believed to have started off in the good old USA.
Posted by John Woestendiek June 9th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: alter, appearance, china, dogs, dye, dyeing, fads, groomers, grooming, paint, panda, pets, resemble, siberian tiger, tiger, trends, wild animals, wildlife, zhengzhou
Singer Aubrey O’Day says she thinks it’s perfectly OK to dye her dog.
The former Danity Kane singer regularly changes the color of her one-year-old Maltese, named Ginger.
“She likes to have looks,” O’Day, 25, explained to Usmagazine.com. “It actually seems like such a taboo weird thing nowadays, but if you research online, you will see a whole underworld of dogs who are dyed.”
O’Day says she changes her dog’s appearance “for different occasions,” revealing that she recently dyed the pup green because she “loves the (Boston) Celtics.”
“She sits on my lap, and I have a brush, and I paint it on and use foils.” Ginger, she says, “loves attention and because she’s colored and has different outfits, she gets so much of it. She prefers it.”
I think it’s a safe bet that it’s not Ginger who’s seeking the attention here. And assuming the dog likes being dyed just because she doesn’t object makes about as much sense as O’Day’s if-it’s-on-the-Internet-it-must-be-ok philosophy.
What is it that makes celebrities think that the animal kingdom exists to provide them with fashion accessories?
(Photo: Joe Corrigan/Getty Images, via USMagazine.com)
Posted by John Woestendiek September 8th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: accessories, accessory, aubrey o'day, celebrities, color, danity kane, dog, dogs, dye, dyed, dyeing, dyes, dying, fashion, ginger, hair, maltese, pets, singer