Shelters Hosting ‘Dirty Dogs’ Makeover Contest Sheds Light on Adoption
Lifestyle| | By Robin Milling
Every year millions of dogs enter shelters with the vast majority of them dirty, matted or maimed. When they arrive less than half of these dogs are getting the grooming they need. That’s why for the past six years Wahl Pets and GreaterGood.org – which supports thousands of shelters and rescue groups all over the world – have teamed together to hold their sixth annual “Dirty Dogs Contest” to draw attention to the ongoing issue. You will be amazed to see the before and after pictures of this year’s contest winners who were transformed from mangy mutts into dogs worthy of “Best in Show.” For the contest this year, 2,400 bottles of Wahl’s pet shampoos were donated to shelters in need, helping to wash and ready more than 20,000 dogs for adoption. In turn, the shelters posted hundreds of their doggie makeovers into the “Dirty Dogs Before & After Gallery.” Ten of the most dramatic makeovers from the gallery were selected to participate in the contest, and public votes determined the top three winners.
“Without proper grooming, shelter dogs are often perceived to be ‘damaged goods’ and overlooked by adoptive families. However, by providing shelters with much-needed grooming supplies, we can help in their efforts to transform these dogs into the healthy, fun loving pets they really are,” Shay Moeller, pet product manager for Wahl, said in a statement. One lucky dog named Sissy – a 12-year-old lhasa apso – was not only adopted, she came in first place in the Dirty Dogs contest. Her prize of $5,000 went to Suncoast Animal League in Palm Harbor, Florida where she was brought in so badly matted it was difficult to tell that she was a dog. The agency described what she looked like prior to her makeover, which might be very upsetting for some to read:
“Her chin was matted to her chest and her face was so matted that her muzzle no longer fit into a bowl. Feces hung like dreadlocks to her backside and her four paws were the size of boxing gloves. Her nails barely protruded through the matting and later on, we found them to be over four inches long. The matting over her eyes prevented her from seeing and we would later find out that the matting caused permanent damage to her eyes. Her teeth were wrapped with matted hair. Her body was entombed within the matted hair.”Now look at this remarkable transformation. Second place was awarded to Wookie from J.J. Woofin’ Paws Rescue Agency in Woodland Hills, California, which received a $2,000 grant for making him into a shining shih tzu. Wookie was captured by Los Angeles Animal Control in horrific condition. The agency wrote, “He was truly a wild boy when we rescued him, and he had to learn all of the skills to live in a home and with other dogs. His mats were so bad that the employees could not even tell what sex he was. We believe that he had never even been touched by humans, because he was extremely aggressive at first and would snap at anybody who tried to pet him.” Wookie’s makeover was truly incredible and led to his adoption. In third place was Stubin from CARES Rescue in Brooksville, Florida, which received $1,000 for reviving his adorable cocker spaniel looks. Sadly Stubin was dumped on the side of a road in a crate. “When Stubin was first found by a good samaritan she wasn’t even sure what type of dog he was. After hours of grooming, we discovered the most wonderful, loving, silly, and playful senior Cocker Spaniel (sic). Stubin may have cataracts, but that does not slow him down. He loves everyone he meets, loves to throw his toys up in the air and catch them, and even plays chase with the other dogs in the rescue. Stubin may have been thrown away like a piece of trash, but we were rewarded with a treasure,” the rescue wrote on the Dirty Dogs site. Stubin is available for adoption. “Dogs left ‘as is’ most likely won’t get adopted. This is why grooming is immensely important. The dog not only looks better, but feels better, which makes them even more adoptable,” Rick Chaboudy, executive director at Suncoast Animal League said in a press release. Winning these grants will allow the shelters to continue helping many other animals like Sissy, Wookie, and Stubin – with extensive medical and grooming care needs – to find them a forever family. Please SHARE these amazing transformations with anybody who loves to see dogs being rescued!
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