My daughter loves her natural reddish highlights, which come out only in the right kind of sunlight. I tried to tell her that I, too, had cool highlights — grayish white — but she wasn’t buying. How does a 5-year-old know so much? So, you can imagine she was interested in my work this week. The Peninsula Humane Society received a tiny, stray, 2-month-old Chihuahua dyed pink! She was found in East Palo Alto by a Good Samaritan and was not using her back leg; X-rays taken by our vet staff revealed a hairline fracture, which we believe will heal with four to six weeks of rest. We issued a press release about the tiny girl we named Candy (she resembles cotton candy), and a media darling was born. Within hours, we had 100-plus suitors who left messages; we began returning calls and selected a fantastic adopter. Some reporters asked why in the world would someone dye their dog’s fur. All sorts of reasons, I guess, but mostly, it has to do with thinking the color will make them look different or stylish. Hardline, anti-dye people will say that there are no hair dyes made for pets that have been tested and determined to be safe. Dye can get in a dog’s mouth eyes or ears, which can be harmful or can cause burning, itching or general skin irritation. And, what if a dog licks and ingests the dye? Animal Planet, on the other paw, gives instructions for dying your dog. Number one, never use human hair dye; the bleach in the dye can irritate your pet. Animal Planet actually suggests using drink mix as a non-toxic dye. I’ll save my drink mix for drinks, thank you. Murray, my dog, has grayish-white, natural highlights, just like me, and I’m sticking with that look. When my daughter is 18 and wants pink highlights, I guess I’ll have to reconsider.
Scott oversees PHS/SPCA’s Adoption, Behavior and Training, Education, Outreach, Field Services, Cruelty Investigation, Volunteer and Media/PR program areas and staff from the new Tom and Annette Lantos Center for Compassion.