There has been lots of recent debate on the extremeness of grooming your dog. It wasn’t too long ago that grooming your dog meant a quick shampoo, a gentle comb and possibly a trim. Nowadays, grooming has risen to a whole new and absurd level. Some dog owners see it as ‘extreme’ and others see it as one of life’s little pleasures.
The correct terminology for this extreme grooming is 'intergrooming'. Over recent years there has been an explosion over the internet and media showing an array of images of funky styles designed to pamper your dog; and what also seems like entertainment for dog owners. Some would argue it’s just another mean of showing off behaviour, and we shouldn’t be displaying our dogs with unnatural haircuts, painted nails and whacky choice of colouring for their coat.
There is no surprise that this trend has sparked somewhat of a debate. The questions most ask are; is this trend just harmless fun, or are we going too far when pampering our pooch? Are we potentially harming them and damaging their health and well-being?
This article delves a little deeper into this crazy faze, and looks at the arguments for and against this new style of grooming for your beloved furry friend.
Is it really harmless fun?
There has been lots of debate on this subject and some dog owners partaking in extreme dog grooming see it as ‘harmless fun’. One owner in particular; Daniela Forshaw, happily admitted on breakfast TV that she spends in the region of £4000 a month priming and pampering her pooch. She insisted that the makeovers are completely safe and humane. It’s hard to understand at this point whether this style of grooming is really harmless fun as it’s relatively new. What we do know is, dogs are primal creatures and they were never designed to have their nails painted, or jewels added to their bodies.
The Kennel Club recently commented the following: "If extreme pampering becomes more normalised then there is a risk that animals will start being seen as accessories, which could lead to their welfare being jeopardised."
There is some truth in this statement. If, as a Nation, we are seen to be accepting this form of grooming then we will look at animals differently and see them more as accessories. This behaviour and attitude towards this form of grooming will then soon become normalised. The influence of social media and the desire to share and glorify your life will also influence those to get their pooch pampered and this is when we run the risk of jeopardising the welfare of our beloved pets. You could argue that this form of treatment says more about the human psyche as opposed to the canine psyche. The animal doesn’t have the needs or desire for their nails to be painted and buffed, neither will a new trendy, colourful haircut boast their confidence and make them feel happier or even sexier.
There is also really nothing creative about colouring in your dog or seeing how many jewels you can use to design that pretty pattern. We should be appreciating their natural beauty and primal instincts. Not treating them as the latest fashion accessory.
As with anything, there is a lot of money to be made with extreme grooming. The more we desire such a profanity the more folk will lock onto the idea, and then up pops another extreme makeover or grooming business for pets. In the UK alone we spend a staggering £10 billion a year on our cats and dogs. Mintel 2015. It’s not hard to see why some would like to cash in on this lucrative industry. But, if you truly do care for your beloved pets and the future of our dogs and cats, then you might want to think twice before booking them in for a balayage and vajazzle.