While dogs and their haircuts get most of the attention at dog shows, there is quite a bit of dog fashion on display at most shows. Even such wash ‘n wear dogs as Pointers and other shorthaired breeds can display some bling in and out of the ring. Show fashions for dogs include such items as collars, leads, grooming coats, and snoods, to name just a few things.

 

Collars and leads

Gone are the days when show dogs would wear simple Resco show leads or a chain link collar and nylon lead. Sure, there are still plenty of handlers who use these traditional leads at shows but you’re just as likely to see a dog sporting something much fancier in the ring. Kangaroo leather leads are popular today with some handlers because of their softness and pliability. Other handlers like something a little showier. They choose colored, braided show leads with beads, usually custom-made . The colors are often chosen to emphasize their dog’s coloring. Such leads can be expensive but when you have a special dog you want to call attention to him or her.

 

Grooming coats

Another item you often see at dog shows, especially if you wander around the grooming area, is a grooming coat or jacket. (This doesn’t refer to the groomer’s jacket worn by the handlers, though they wear them, too.) Grooming coats for dogs are often placed on a dog after a bath to help the hair dry flat or to keep the hair in place before the show. They can come in a variety of materials depending on the kind you want for your dog, the weather, and other factors, but lycra coats made of swimsuit material are very popular. The lycra swimsuit coats typically have a narrow opening for the head to keep the hair on the neck smooth. The material around the body is loose and open so the handler has to pin it in place. These suits come in a variety of colors and prints. Many people who sew make them and sell them so if you would like to buy one for your dog you can often ask around and find out who is making them or find someone online who makes them. The coats are especially useful for longhaired dogs.

 

Grooming coats are removed once the dog arrives at the show so the handler can apply some last minute touches prior to going in the ring.

 

Snoods

Snoods look something like shower caps for dogs. They are cloth hoods that fit around a dog’s head and especially the ears of longhaired dogs. Owners use them to keep long ears out of food, though some people keep the snood on the dog at other times besides meal time. They can be made out of any lightweight material and they have elastic sewn around the edges to hold them in place. Dogs usually learn to put up with them, though most owners have to keep putting them back on when they come off. Along with keeping the dog’s ears out of his food, the purpose of the snood is to keep the ears clean and keep the long ear hair from breaking off. Think of them as turbans for dogs. As you can imagine, snoods come in all kinds of colors and prints.

 

Along with these fashions, there are many other things used for grooming and showing dogs that can come in a variety of colors and styles. Brushes and other grooming accessories can come in different colors is you would like to have your tools match your dog’s things. Even shears come in pink, blue, and other colors if you would like to invest in colors. Dog shows can be as fashionable as you would like to make them.

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