Pinellas County Animal Services/Facebook

Dog Brought into Shelter Suffering from Severe Burns Due to Hair Dye

The little dog's skin was burned from the chemicals in the dye.

 Pinellas County Animal Services recently treated a little Maltese dog named Violet who was dyed purple with boxed hair dye. The Florida animal rescue posted the story on their Facebook as a warning for pet owners everywhere to never use hair dye meant for humans on dog hair.

The dog came into the shelter weak, with her eyes so swollen that she could barely open them. Her skin was clearly burned under the fur but the damage was much worse than staff originally thought.

Violet, named so after the ordeal, was given fluids and pain meds. But as they started to clean the purple dye from her white fur, the color wasn't the only thing to come off. Staff put bandages on the wounds and stopped for the night. The next morning, Violet had more energy, giving kisses and letting her personality show through the pain, but when the bandages came off so did some of her skin.

WARNING: Graphic Images

All of Violet's dyed hair was shaved off, but the dye had reached the skin and the chemicals seeped through and burned the poor dog.

The shelter staff was horrified. They said in the Facebook post:

"We began the arduous process of shaving off her hair to really measure the damage - to our horror her skin began to slough off. Good thing Violet was peacefully anesthetized. It was so much worse than we initially thought - how would this little dog make it through?!?!"

But make it through she did, with a good attitude to boot!

It took three months, lots of "pain medication, antibiotics, IV fluids, honey treatments, scab removal, anesthetizing, bandage changes, sleepless nights, worrying, hope, worrying, hope" before Violet was wandering the halls of the shelter yipping happily in outfits to keep her warm.

Violet's hair slowly started to grow back, her eyesight improved, and her bark returned to normal. Violet is perfect the way she is and doesn't need any extra alterations, especially no more hair dye.

A wig will do!

And the best part of this story is that Violet found new owners who apparently "specialize in beautifying pets."

Violet's story is a cautionary tale that has a happy ending, but very well could have ended in tragedy. Human hair dye isn't meant for dog hair, and the harsh chemicals affect their sensitive skin differently than ours. If you do want to color your dog's fur, there are dog-safe hair dyes available, or you can use food coloring.

Tell us what you think about this heartbreaking story in the comments below.

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