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Why It's Horrible To Dye Your Dog's Fur

Updated November 6, 2018 32.7k views12 items

Dogs are a man's best friend, if for nothing else than putting up pet owners dressing them up in silly outfits and dyeing them crazy colors. Dog hair dye is a growing trend that leaves our furry friends any color imaginable, sometimes several at once. Some pet owners get super creative with their ideas, dyeing and trimming their dog's hair to resemble another animal like a tiger or a character like Pikachu. While some people think that dyeing a dog's fur is harmless, more people agree that this is just a dog myth. Dyeing dogs is simply another one of those bad pet trends. 

Should you dye your dog's hair? There are many reasons why it's not a good idea and it's important for pet owners to educate themselves about the dangers of dog dye, including the physical and psychological effects on your canine companion. Also, remember your furry friend is a living creature and not a toy you can dress up or accessory piece you can change according to your wardrobe. But if you simply must dye your dog, there are "non-toxic" dyes you can purchase and it's very simple to make your own. Your furry friend will thank you. 

  • It's Possible For Dogs To Get Painful Ear Infections During The Dyeing Process

    People who've dyed their own hair know the process requires a lot of water. Like humans, dogs can accumulate water in their ears, but this can cause painful complications for your pooch. A dog's ear is configured differently than a human's, since their ear canal has a L shape which can easily trap water. The longer the water sits in their ears, the more likely it is for bacteria or yeast to grow in the moist environment and cause an ear infection.

    Dogs with floppy ears are often more likely to get ear infections since they have more folds in their ears to retain moisture.

  • It's Illegal In Some States And Comes With Hefty Fines

    The state of Florida passed a law to protect rabbits and chicks from being dyed each year around Easter. However, the law also makes it illegal to dye a dog's fur. In 2010, one woman who dyed her poodle's tail and paws for Halloween received a $255 ticket from an animal control officer. It doesn't matter if the dye is considered non-toxic, the state considers dyeing your pet to be an act of animal cruelty.

    The state of Colorado also has laws in place making it illegal to dye your dog, specifically stating, "No person shall dye or color live fowl, rabbits, or any other animals or have in possession, display, sell, or give away such dyed or colored animals." One woman discovered this law the hard way and was given a $1,000 fine for her pink pooch.

  • It Can Be Humiliating To Your Furry Friend

    Many dog owners can usually tell when their pooch is happy or upset, but dogs are also capable of feeling humiliation. They don't understand the dyeing process and know when they are being laughed at or being given attention that they don't want. Caroline Kisko of the Kennel Club believes owners need to draw a line between their own vanity and a dog's needs, as well as realize that dogs who are humiliated might not always show such feelings. She comments:

    "It is not a toy and we need to maintain that a dog is a dog. Since we can't ask them, we should err on the side of caution. [...] Some will have a reasonably high level of tolerance for that sort of thing. You can get a dog that will love being the center of attention. But some will feel silly."

  • Dyed Dogs Are Not Natural Or Necessary

    When humans dye their hair, they usually do so to express their individuality. Dogs, however, express themselves in other ways and don't need to be pink to feel like themselves. Dyeing a dog's fur treats them more like an accessory than a living creature. There are many other ways to show off your dog, such as ribbons, bandanas, or dog clothing. Even a silly Halloween costume is a better choice. If dogs were meant to be blue with yellow polka dots, they would have been born that way.

    A spokesperson for PETA says, "PETA would urge people to let dogs be dogs: love and appreciate them for their natural beauty and leave them out of our confusing human shenanigans."