Before and After Photos: Meet the Now-Spiffy Finalists in This Year's Dirty Dogs Contest
Behold: Several very dirty—some dangerously so—rescue dogs who've been spiffed up to the point that they're barely recognizable and thriving in their new homes.
It's time for the 10th annual Dirty Dogs Contest, presented by Wahl and Greater Good Charities. Through Nov. 9, fans can peruse before and after photos of the groomed shelter dogs here and vote once per day for their favorites. The winning dog's shelter will receive a $10,000 prize while the second- and third-place shelters earn $3,000 and $2,000, respectively.
The dogs, however, are already the true winners. The 10—11, actually—finalists were rescued from hazardous conditions, some with their fur so matted or overgrown that they couldn't move how they were supposed to.
So before we introduce the finalists, let's give a big thanks to the shelter workers who helped get these pups on the way to their new, pain-free lives. Now let's meet the dogs. (All information courtesy of the Dirty Dogs Contest.)
Easton was unable to walk because his fur was so long and matted. Because of that, he was set to be euthanized before being rescued. A good haircut revealed that "he" was actually a "she," and 12-year-old dog is in much better shape now.
A landlord brought Elmer into a shelter after a renter moved out and left him and two buddies alone in their crates. The veterinarian treating our guy said she'd never seen matting that bad. Thankfully, he's now free of all that dirty hair and living in a new, much nicer home.
A neglected, fearful stray dog, Cheyenne's fur was so matted that she couldn't even go to the bathroom without being in pain. Getting rid of all that excess hair took two hours, but the miniature schnauzer will be ready for adoption very soon.
This sweet girl was rescued from a woman who could no longer care for her dogs because of her dementia. Elise's fur was so matter that her four paws looked like eight. Her more than 1 inch long and some had grown underneath her rear paw pads. Now, "the Muppet" as she's known, looks like all that never happened.
Oh, poor Olivia. She was found as a stray drinking from a neighborhood gutter on Father's Day. The shelter that brought her in discovered her severe mange. It took months of treatment, but look at her now!
Oliver was so neglected and his fur so matted that he couldn't close his eyes. Thank goodness for shelters, huh? The "sweetest dog alive" is now loving life with his forever family. He sure deserves it.
Sharon and Debbie
These former stray sisters were found huddled in a culvert. What rescuers thought to be dirt on the poor pair was actually thousands of fleas that made them uncomfortable and put them at risk for other diseases. But look at them after three long baths!
Looking at another frightening case of matted fur, groomers took hours to shave 2 pounds of hair off Godiva, who's pretty small to begin with. Under all those mats was a sweet little dog who must be much, much more comfortable.
Matted fur covered her eyes, her back was scratched raw, and she had a limp. Her shelter treated her injuries, and after a bath and a desperately needed haircut, she transformed into a total cutie with pointy ears. Even better? She's since been adopted.
Our buddy hadn't been helped in a long time. The stray dog's fur was so matted he could hardly move, his long nails curled around his paws twice, and he was blind. The total, tedious grooming job took a long, long time, requiring "every tool in the chest." But the result was worth it: a little guy much happier in his new forever home.
Vote in the Dirty Dogs Contest daily through Nov. 9 here.