Wednesday, October 10, 2012

You Sexy Thing

I can't remember now how many collars the dogs have been through but I do know it's a lot. Even though they've had several collars I still try to keep with a theme for each dog based on their personality and sometimes what they've been from birth. Raimi was Blue Boy, or Mr Blue, when he was born and therefore his collar has always been some shade of blue. Here he is 3.5 weeks old and tackling a cow hoof. I'll let you take a moment to recover from his adorable-ness.

He's had about 3 or 4 collars, about one just over every year since he's not too hard on them. He had one collar for at least 2 years and I actually still have it stowed in the truck as an emergency collar. It's a sort of nylon but much softer than a lot of versions on the shelf and I loved the chain on it, he was accustomed to a choke collar so when he heard the chain on this collar he smartened right up. It is a fairly utilitarian martingale chain collar because he is a fairly utilitarian kind of Boy.  Hard to imagine the puppy above turned into this hunk of burnin' love ...

He currently has a very serviceable collar I got for him almost two Christmases ago and it's still in quite good shape. It's completely made of fabric, except the hardware of course, and since he is not Leeloo he hasn't beaten the hell out of it. I wanted a masculine, but attractive collar for him and I think this one hit the right note. It certainly suits him and at the moment there is nothing wrong with it.

I didn't realise, or rather, it didn't occur to me before we moved here that when we went to the beach the salt in the water would cause the chains to rust. All of the collars I had at the time had chains and they all rusted. So we went to all fabric collars which don't rust but do get unimaginably dirty. Especially when worn by a Leeloo. She never had a collar color at birth because her white feet made her pretty easy to pick out of a crowd, so I randomly chose a sort of pink theme for her. I would have been better off choosing a collar the color of dirt. She started with a smaller version of this collar, taken when she was about 9 months old and not yet familiar with the joys of rolling in things that make Mommy gag on the drive home and pull out the hose in the backyard.

She graduated to a really nice red silk fabric collar and it took her just over a year to almost completely kill its spirit. I didn't realize, because her previous collar was a simple nylon, that she was so hard on collars. I mean, all they do is wear them around their necks. How much damage can they do? As it turns out ... a lot. Leeloo has ground so much dirt into her last two collars you sometimes can't tell what the pattern is and so worn the fabric so that the threads in the middle of the collar start peeling away.
The pretty red silk one got replaced late last year when the threads along the edges could no longer cope with Leeloo's mad dashes through the woods and rolls in unmentionable substances on the forest floors. I chose a nice patterned pink one thinking the swirly flowers might hide the dirt but no, it just became a sad gray version of its former self.
Cora is and will forever be Miss Purple. She was the last puppy born and was graced with the color purple. Since she was born on the heels of her Uncle Zero winning Best of Breed at Westminster in New York, I decided her 'set' would be purple and gold for the Westminster colors.  Don't her eyes just slay you? And those ears ... swoon.
I found a lovely collar for her online which was pretty much exactly what I was looking for and she's had it for the last year, ever since she could fit into it. I really like the collar, it's a nice dark purple with subtle gold pattern and she's been fairly good to it. Of late she's been following her mother to The Dark Side of collar wear since they now have a squirrel to harass and frogs to torture together. Fighting the trail of dirt into my house is a constant battle and the collars are not immune.
So where is this all going? A while back I started seeing some of my peeps on Facebook liking and eventually buying collars from someone called Sexy Beast Dog Collars. I didn't think I needed collars any time soon so I just browsed and thought they were yet another person online selling dog collars. If you've looked for a special dog collar you know most collar patterns repeat and to get something truly original you have to spend a lot and look really hard. However, a spot of loose threads on Leeloo's current collar caused me to look closer at SBDC on Facebook. I was hooked. I contacted the owner and asked about some colors and the price of what I wanted. In particular I was interested in the leather collars. What could be better for Leeloo? I was pleasantly surprised at the cost of the collars and promptly ordered one each for the two girls - The Boy's collar doesn't need replacing really and I'm not seeing colors or patterns that speak to me yet. The girl's collars came today and I tell you I was not disappointed in the least. I saw this product shot of my custom collars on SBDC's FB page today, thankfully after I got them in the mail (only a week in the post!), so the surprise wasn't spoiled, and boy, am I impressed.
From a person who has seen her fair share of collars in 36 years in purebred dogs, I can tell you these are some of the best. I'm curious how they will hold up to Leeloo since she is the queen of wrecking things that cannot be wrecked, but at first blush the girls are definitely sexy beasts on a mission in these collars. Little creek frogs and naughty squirrels beware.
Leeloo's is her obligatory pink with a nice lime green accent which she shows off very well. The leather needs to be worked a bit but I'm sure Leeloo will take care of that in no time. They are not, I repeat ... NOT, wearing these collars in the boarding kennel while I am in Barbados, but there is a faint hope they will survive at least a year or more of Doodlebug wear and tear.
The Baby Booble still has her Westminster theme and she is rockin' it. I always go with the 1.5" collars on my dogs and I think it makes a huge difference to how it makes their neck appear. Both Leeloo and Cora have long elegant necks and to put a heavy 2" collar on it would shorten them and appear bulky. For The Boy, because his neck is already bulky, I go with the 1.5" to make it appear more slender. Same collar, different effect. You gotta know how to dress, right?
The Boy will get his collar soon - after seeing these gorgeous designs and knowing the chains aren't going anywhere near the ocean anytime soon, I will be sure to order him one as soon as I get back from my trip. And Cora, she is always sexy but with this collar, she is unstoppable.

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