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White as the driven snow.

If your dogs are like most, they seem to know just when a really important show is coming up and decide to blow coat and it comes out in handfuls!

Balancing the need for a great show coat and the desire and sensibility of having a dog leading an active dog’s life, is sometimes a dilemma for exhibitors.

We have all seen exhibitors keep dogs in crates or boxes for most of the show career sitting up like little Budgies in a cage, let out for supervised periods to do the necessary. Sure they have great coats and no staining on elbows etc but most of us like to let the dog romp and frankly have a normal life.

Staining can be an issue. Plush Puppy has some advice on what you can do it provide an active life for your dogs and what is the best products to help with stains.

Staining is due to multiples of reasons. Genetics play their part, diet also, porous surfaces also increase staining along with dampness. To minimise staining its important to address the issues you can easily control first. Ideally reduce contact with any porous surfaces that dogs lay/sleep on. This is the major cause of staining. The porous surfaces draw out hydration of the coat and skin in key areas such as elbows and hocks. Applying a coverage to concrete areas to seal it and raised bedding on favourite napping and sun baking areas works great. Bedding in sleeping areas is also very important. This doesn’t need to be soft and fluffy for those that have destructive dogs/breeds but something that simply removes dogs from laying on a porous surface and provides a barrier between the dog and where they sleep. Next is dampness, the area where your dogs run and sleep must be dry as possible. Clearly if its raining or the ground is wet after a storm dogs need to use this area, however after they should be in or have access to a dry area to remove the dampness to the coat and skin. Dampness on the coat and skin allows an increase of bacteria and other nasties that increases the possibility of causing staining.

Genetics we can’t control but we have all had a dog or a line that has a higher predisposition to staining. Been aware of this simply makes understanding more care must be taken to prevent what possible triggers we can. Diet is another possible cause that can increase staining. This can be in an individual dog or a diet sensitive line. The best advice is feed a product that you know exactly what ingredients are in it, this requires reading the actual ingredients label! Not what is written on the front of the bag! Keep a note of what your dog/s have been feed, what brand, what ingredients. Dogs are like us and can have different reactions to different proteins and carbohydrate (grain) sources. To understand possible trigger foods and help prevent staining.

Now we have covered what you can do to minimise staining. This is now Plush Puppy’s turn to educate you on what we can do on existing stains and staining reduction. Plush Puppy products have and always been and always will be outcome orientated. 

Not all whitening shampoos are equal. The science behind a whitening shampoo is that it provides a toning quality. Toning is the visual reduction of warm/red tones from the light spectrum that humans can see. Every colour we see is how that colour reflects light that our eye sees and how our brain interprets that colour. The quality of the ingredient used to provide the toning is what we see. Now for the hard part, quality balanced with harshness defines which ingredient has the best effect and causes the least damage to the coats/ hair’s cuticle and skin. Plush Puppy in every whitening product only uses the very best ingredients that provides maximum results with the absolutely no negative effects. Hence why our products can be used repeatedly, always giving you the best, most consistent results with excellent coat condition. Plush Puppy Herbal Whitening Shampoo is for all these reasons one of our best products. Use at a dilution of 1-part shampoo to 3-10 parts water depending on the strength required.

Plush Puppy Wonder Blok is simply a toning shampoo combined with the latest of technology in a solid form. Historically many forms of laundry products were used on dogs i.e. Sards wonder soap and velvet soap. Whilst these worked rather well, they had short term gains for long term problems. They were abrasive to coats, stripped the coats of natural oils and harshly opened the cuticle to allow continued and increased staining after their use. The product was never designed or formulated to be used in this manner or for use on a dog. They are laundry products, made in huge quantities and within a commercial price point. I never heard of these products being recommended for human hair for very good reasons! If greater stain reduction is needed on an area try Wonder Blok. Apply to the dampened area, work in, allow time to work and rinse. The greater the stain, the greater the time left in or repeat more often.

Any form of stain reduction requires the cuticle of the coat/hair to be opened to provide the greatest amount of toning to the area. The cuticle is outer protective layers of the coat. These layers are like an onion, the outer layers provide protection, whilst the inner layers are the structural integrity of the coat. To open them enough allows the toning properties to work best, to open them too much causes irreparable damage. Therefore, Plush Puppy only uses the highest quality ingredients and combines the latest technology in their products. 

Once the cuticle is opened it should be closed to both protect coat and to seal the coat therefore reducing the staining reoccurring. In soft coated breeds this is easy. Conditioners help seal the cuticle. Again, the quality of the condition and the ingredients in it defines on how well it does its job. Plush Puppy Silk Protein Conditioner uses the very best ingredients and at a level of formulation to achieve optimum results. Apply 1-part Silk Protein Conditioner to 5-10 parts water (dilution rate depends on the individual dog and level of conditioner required). Now to address coats which we don’t want to soften and need to retain their texture. For sealing these coats use one of two Plush Puppy products. The first being Plush Puppy Reviva Coat. This is by design a conditioner however by its remarkable formulation doesn’t overly soften. The perfect product to be applied after whitening to seal that cuticle. Simply apply by hand or diluted in water the area and then rinse. The other is Plush Puppy Coat Rescue, this is a very advanced formulation as its designed to help rebuild the inner cuticle strength and seal the cuticle. Its remarkable formula uses the very latest of technology and has very little effect on softening the coat. The uniqueness of this product is rebuilding inner cuticle strength and its protection, this in turn helps the prevention of staining. Apply by thoroughly mixing with warm water and covering the required areas, then rinse.

We have explained the products to reduce staining now to explain ways to reduce this been caused in the first place. Regular bathing is the greatest one combined with using the best products. Sadly, we have heard the statement we always use Plush Puppy for show baths BUT we use “XYZ” for maintenance bathing. The realisation is that you recognise the quality of Plush Puppy and the results it gives you for your most important show preparation bath, yet you are happy to use inferior products for maintenance. The logic we guess is basically we use the cheap stuff midweek and the good stuff when we need. The facts however say we are happy to use “XYZ” which cause many problems and potentially increase staining by damaging the coat and cuticle. Basically, when it suits you to save a dollar, we use the cheap stuff but then we are happy to spend many extra dollars using many different products to help that damage we caused for a show. Sadly, a concept that seriously has no value, makes no sense, and is highly cost inefficient. Use the best products you can consistently please don’t try and save 1 dollar to then later spend 10 or more.

Plush Puppy Deep Cleansing Shampoo is another great product for clarifying and deep cleaning of a coat. The great degreaser on coats without harshness. All Plush Puppy shampoos are designed and formulated for results and repeated use for consistent results.

Last topic is whitening an area at a show. You may have a new dog or just one of those problem areas that just need that added help to make whiter at a show. Plush Puppy has two solutions for this a dry and wet product. Each is suited for different coat types, lengths and textures. Plush Puppy Cover Up Cream is a wet application. If there was a magic product that was liquid chalk that then dried to a dry chalk, oh that’s right there is, and it is called Cover Up Cream. Applied to generally shorter coated stained areas by using a damp sponge. Less is more, a very light covering and allowed to dry, repeat until the desired look is achieved. The other product is Plush Puppy Fairy Frost. This is an extremely white powder that has a cling factor to it. Applied either pure or in your favourite chalk mix by a powder brush. This product clings to the coat and therefore has a much longer lasting and higher visual effect.

Plush Puppy is and always will be a company that only uses the highest quality ingredients, combining the very best and latest technology to formulate them. This is our commitment to our entire product range, using only the very best of ingredients, using the very latest technology, employing the very best chemists to formulate our products and testing all products before they are released by the best and most knowledgeable people.

Plush Puppy Australia