Friday, September 27, 2013

Fragrance & Pets

To Julian - a beloved cat in need of help - Click here to help Julian

Photo credit: + Q Perfume Blog

The history of pets and animal domestication goes all the way back to Ancient Egypt. It is also said that Romans kept dogs, cats, birds and horses, but animals were first considered as purely functional beings as dogs were used for hunting, cats were used to keep little animals out of the house and horses for transportation. Before the 1800s pets were items of luxury and status  symbols of wealth - first only for the royalty, later to the Bourgeoisie when little piglets were also considered pets. A pink piglet pet has saved Casanova played by Heat Ledger in the Casanova film - American version of 2005 -  in the funniest under the table fellatio scene, which I bring here only for a spicy touch to this article (after all life is shorts my friends, we need to have a little fun!).

As society developed pets were no longer available only to the upper classes and they became a middle class commodity. But let's jump some steps in History and get to what is the trend that has been catching a lot of attention in recent years: PET HUMANIZATION.

On the market today you will find birthday celebration parties for pets, pet's funerals, health insurance and dental plans for pets, pet's spas, gyms, hotels, daycares and all sort of center to help your pet feel more relaxed, healthy and happy. There are even Dog's Country Clubs!

Also available in the market there are many jewelry brands, fashion brands for pets and all kind of fancy accessories one can think of, not to mention all the organic foods, or gourmet treats for pets such as muffins, gourmet dinner served in restaurants, such as roasted turkey with butternut squash and russet potatoes and so on...
Today pet owners call themselves "parents'. There are even Court rulings determining pet's custody just as child custody and support. Which by the way I think it is fantastic!
Have you ever heard of a Bark Mitzva? As ridiculous as it may sound to you it exists! It is a Bar Mitzva ceremony for dogs owned by people who own dogs following the Jewish faith...

Parenting pets is called Humanization. We humans are treating our pets as if they were humans like us, and when it comes to grooming, the sky is the limit. 
Fact is that dogs smell. Some people love their pets just as they are - animals that smell like animals; some prefer to get rid of any smell or odor that remotely make them remind of the fact that their loved creatures are in fact animals. 

For perfume lovers, who not only enjoy wearing fragrances, but also think pets should share their passion there are many options in the market. From simple fragrances to upscale cosmetic lines, the range is really vast.

I am bringing here a few fragrances that I thought were interesting in terms of projects and proposals (that does not mean that I endorse the use of perfumes in animals):

MASCHIO is a luxury fragrance for dogs developed by a Manhattan based upscale company called Dog Fashion Spa. 
As the brand describes the fragrance "it is made for the “man of the house”, maschio is an exciting dog fragrance that captures the essence of quality life for dogs with its powerful mix of style, excitement, and male sensuality. inspired by the energy of new york city, maschio embodies the ultimate expression of masculinity in an aura of marine notes, woods, herbs, and fruits. our iconic dog fragrance for him creates a feeling of relaxed sophistication and understated luxury.impeccably attired in a bottle inspired by classic american glamour - an ultimate expression of personal luxury. style: masculine. confident. modern. notes: lemon, grapefruit, bergamot, lavender, marine accord, amber, parents: spray on the withers, away from the dog’s face and he will smell fantastic for hours".
Did you notice that the brand calls the pet owners "parents"; Also notice that the fragrance is aiming confident modern dogs (what the hell is a modern dog????) and dogs were so humanized that they became "The man in the house" (???). oh Good Lord!

Photo credit: Dog Fashion Spa

And what about a fragrance for your dog bottled in a flacon design by Karim Rashid?! Sexy Beast motto is: if you love your pet, why not? 
The fragrance is described by the brand as an unisex blend of bergamot and vanilla-infused musk combined with natural patchouli, mandarin and nutmeg oils, and adds “this distinct and highly-addictive eau de parfum will keep your dog smelling fresh and clean long after the trip to the groomer”.

Photo credit: Sexybeast

Need to give a pooch a birthday gift or maybe a Valentine’s treat? Yeah baby, some people don’t just love their pets; they really looove their pets! Well, Les Poochs Fragrances according to the brand thinks pets need to receive perfume as gifts ”features eight exquisite scents which will leave your pooch smelling delightfully fresh for several days. These light elegant fragrances are packaged in beautiful crystal glass bottles and come in beautiful boxes making them wonderful gifts for the most pampered Pooch. From lively fresh notes for the male dog to lovely white florals for female dogs, Les Poochs has a scent for all breeds for all seasons. So good even "humans" can't resist wearing them!!!” 

photo credit: lapooch

John Harris from Nature Lab/Prestige Worldwide Pet company understood PET HUMANIZATION to its core when he launched his line of fragrances for dogs. I am bringing here the history of his products written by the brand (not because I am lazy to re-write it in my very own words, but because it is simply captures Harris sense of humor and it is hilarious as it is!) so here it goes:

photo credit: Nature Lab

"Strong enough for a man, but made for a Chihuahua...

The Beginning
Nature Labs entered the personal care products industry in the Fall of 1994.  Our first homerun was called “Cucumber Slices”; a human health and beauty aid consisting of cotton pads immersed in cucumber extract and other botanical ingredients. Stiff competition, copy-catting and limited sales eventually drove Nature Labs to the dogs.
The Pet  
Pet colognes have been popular for quite some time.  Let’s face it: a dog is a dog is a dog and dogs smell like dogs. So, Nature Labs created a parody line of pet colognes to help keep pet odors at bay.
The result: “colognes for pets” teeming with panache, flair and intrigue.  Top smellers include: cK-9, Timmy Holedigger, Miss Claybone, Bono Sports, Arfmani and Pucci".

Panache, flair and intrigue...well prestige fragrance/fashion brands were so intrigued that that Harris faced the Courts:

"News, Abuse and the Like
Since its launch in February 1997, Colognes for Pets has created some great buzz and has even aroused the likes of Tommy Hilfiger’s trademark attorneys; it was rough going for a while, having to deal with all of the legalities and shelling-out big bucks to defend our little Timmy Holedigger. In August 2002, the Federal Court of New York ruled in favor of Timmy Holedigger, ordering Mr. Hilfiger to “chill”."

I wonder if Marc Jacobs would also sue Harris if he made his dog version of would be cool to see a Dalmatian advertising the doggy version DOT!

I have no idea how the smell-alike-fragrances of Mr. John Harris really smell, but one thing I know for sure: if Harris has a dog...he lives in a mansion! Imagine all the agreements signed outside the courts not to produce fragrances smelling like Dior, Chanel, Guerlain, etc? That my friends, is a formula he did not develop in the lab...NY Federal Court delivered to him.

But back to fragrances for dogs - this blogger does not spray perfume in her dog, but she also does not judge who does it. The key to make pets happy is to respect them as they are - ANIMALS. If you wish to use perfume on your pet understand its needs and biological physiology. Olfaction is the primary sense of dogs. While humans have 5 million olfactory receptors, dogs have 220 million. Knowing that you have already a tool to know that you can't spray perfume in a dog as you spray on yourself. Dogs are more sensitive to smell than we are. The safe use of fragrance for pets - whether it is safe or not, raises many controversies. The best advise I can give you is to ask your Vet! They are the expert when dealing with animal's health care.

The cute puppy is Ralph. I love him as a member of my family and I treat him with the respect he deserves. He is a puppy dog, not a human child. Ralph is now 9 moths old, happy and active.

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