Pink poodle raises breast cancer awareness, gets woman in trouble

Filed under: In The News

Ever since we got our pure white Bichon Frise puppy two years ago, Ellie has wanted to get some Kool-Aid and dye her hair pink. I won't agree to this mostly because I am afraid the pink will rub off onto my carpet and furniture. In Boulder, Colorado, however, there is another good reason not to dye your puppy: it is illegal. Intended to discourage people from dyeing rabbits and chicks at Easter, the city code reads: "No person shall dye or color live fowl, rabbits, or any other animals."

Despite the law, Joy Douglas has been dyeing her poodle Cici for about four years now. She gets that pretty pink hue by using beet juice and sometimes Kool-Aid to 'stain' her dog. She doesn't do this just for the novelty of having a pink dog, but to help raise awareness about breast cancer. Pink is the official color of the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

But officials at the Humane Society of Boulder Valley don't like the pink pup and have warned Douglas several times to stop dyeing her dog. On March 1, Douglas was ticketed for the offense and fined $1,000. Douglas has hired an attorney to fight the charge. "I can understand something done in large vats and it's not done with a lot of animal care by people who don't know their animals," Douglas says. "But I have a personal connection to my animal, I would never hurt my animal, I have a business full of little beautiful animals that are treasures for not only myself but the community."

"Cici is being stripped of her civic duty," Douglas says. "And I don't plan to take it sitting down." In the meantime, Douglas says she is taking advantage of the attention her pink poodle predicament has garnered by raising even more money for breast cancer research.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.