Okay, Minions. This is an intervention. Your dog depends on you for food, shelter, water, and love. But there is one more thing your dog depends on you for… not to dress them in tacky ass accesories. Perhaps it is because both Potnoodle and Fang have worked with dogs from the general public, but they are both incredibly judgemental about your dog’s collar and leash. BusyBee is admittedly not a collar whore like her fellow dog snobs, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t have some strong opinions on this subject as well.
That’s right. We know where your dog’s stuff came from, we’re judging you for it, and we can probably tell you a bit about yourself in the process. Now before you get all worried, this isn’t a price thing. Inexpensive or affordable items can be great. It’s when you combine cheapness with a lack of good taste or common sense that we run into issues. In our benevolence, we’ve decided to make it easy for you to snobbify your pet so we can send you out into the world as the stylish, stylish minions that you are.
Rule #1: Skinny leashes are your friend.
Why is your leash that wide? Get a thinner one. Much unlike jeans, skinny leashes will never make you look ridiculous. One inch leashes are tacky and ugly and generally too big for the dog that they are on. Your Yorkie-poo doesn’t need a 6 foot long, 3 inch wide leather leash. Thinner is lighter, easier to manage, and also not tacky. At an inch we’ll assume you don’t walk your dog a lot. Wider than one inch, we’re going to assume that you’re packing up your wagon to hit the Oregon trail.
Rule #2: If it doesn’t fit, donate it.
That collar shouldn’t hang to your dog’s knees and if your dog is turning blue it’s too tight. Know how your collar is supposed to fit and if you don’t know, ask. And if it doesn’t fit your dog, donate it to a local shelter, veterinarian, food bank (they need more than food) or Goodwill.
Rule #3: You’re not in a gang. Put away the chain leash.
A leash is not a self-defense item or an anti-theft device. If you have a pet who needs a chain leash because they will pull through woven nylon, cotton, or leather, you need to return your elephant to the zoo and go get a dog.
Rule #4: If it doesn’t look clean, it’s not.
Dirty ratty collars make us think you’re dirty and ratty. Even if it’s the truth, leave us with some mystery. Soap, water and some elbow grease can have your $10 ten year old collar looking brand new.
Rule # 5: Take care of your shit.
Wash it. Dry it. Don’t let the dog chew it. Don’t leave it outside. Don’t bury it for months like Kimchi. It’s not rocket science.
Rule #6: Rhinestones are for the 90’s, Pageant Girls and Drag Queens
Unless you are Lady Gaga, featured on TLC, or MC Hammer, step away from the rhinestones. If your dog is wearing rhinestones it’s inevitably named Princess or Lord Fluffykins and you’ve probably been nasty to your groomer* which is not something you want to advertise (Unless of course you like being secretly flipped off behind your back)
*Fact: Groomers can tell how awful your dog is by their name and accessories.
Rule #7: Coordinate, don’t match.
Yes Virginia, getting the matching leash isn’t a good idea. Yeah stuff comes in sets sometimes, but really? Printed leashes lean heavily towards tacky anyway, but if it’s identical to your collar it’s obvious that zero thought was put into the purchase. You don’t have to be a canine Michael Kors, but a little bit of effort goes a long way.
Rule #8 : Flexis are the devil
Do we need to go over this again?
Rule # 9: Animal print on an animal…Really?
Please leave animal print where it belongs…on Fran Drescher, your great grandma Eunice, and tacky bachelorette party decorations.
Rule #10: Camo is for Marines and Big Game Hunters. Not your Shih-poo.
Does your dog track bear? Are you preparing for it to lead a revolution in South America? No? Then it doesn’t need that camo, period. Put that down. Here’s a news flash… most hunters don’t use camo collars so they don’t shoot their own dog. If they aren’t using a nice plain leather collar they’re using a safety orange one. Don’t inflict your bad taste on your dog.
Rule #11: If it’s plastic, put it down.
We repeat, do you hunt? No? Than put that plastic safety orange collar down. Your Pug will get a fungus.
Rule #12: Expensive doesn’t necessarily mean it’s good quality.
Yeah, spending $80 at a retailer will won’t mention doesn’t mean it’s going to last more than a weekend. A Tractor Supply collar can last you years and years if you take care of it.
Rule #13: Chain Stores are overpriced
If you have a particular attachment to being unique, don’t act like a twat when you see your ‘hot pink zebra print’ collar and leash set on 14 other dogs on a walk. Yes, they also spent $30 on it so they were ripped off too. There are a ton of online retailers who carry excellent quality and sometimes truly customizable stuff online for a great price.
Rule #14: You can make your own
Paracord, strap nylon, ribbon and hardware aren’t all that expensive. If you don’t like what’s out there, try making your own. Fang has become adept at paracord leads and collars while Potnoodle’s custom collar wardrobe for I and L rival most boutiques in inventory. BusyBee fears sewing herself to…herself, so has decided to step away from the crafting table and rely on her more sewing savvy friends to make Mr. T pretty things (hint hint). Potnoodle needs to get on that.
Rule #15: Don’t get carried away
Let’s be realistic here, this is stuff for dogs. You really don’t need a $300 collar. You can have nice, quality things without spending a fortune. We’re certainly not saying be a cheapskate, but you don’t have to mortgage your house to do it. It’s all about balancing what works for your budget and what isn’t a pile of tacky garbage. If there’s ever any doubt, remember to aim for classy and fabulous will come with practice. Just because it exists doesn’t mean you need to put it on your dog, or yourself for that matter.
Essentially there are so many amazing options out there for our pets. If you follow our rules, you’ll land on the good side of amazing and not be a WTF Wednesday featuree.