Underdog's Rags-To-Riches Story Sheds Light on Animal Adoption, Just in Time For National Dog Day

Crinolin 1st place

STERLING, Ill. (Aug. 23, 2018) – National Dog Day is Aug. 26, 2018, and while all dogs should be celebrated, one lucky dog has a reason to cheer. Crinolin was rescued along with 80 other dogs from a hoarding situation. While all the dogs were in horrible shape due to their deplorable living conditions, Crinolin was the worst having lived in the home the longest. At first, rescuers didn’t know Crinolin’s gender as painful matted fur caked her body. After groomers spent hours removing hardened chunks of fur and washing off layers of filth, she was feeling like a million bucks and was quickly adopted. Crinolin’s dramatic transformation not only got her a new “leash” on life, but the title of America’s Top Shelter Dog Makeover in the 2018 Dirty Dogs Contest. The annual effort from pet industry leaders Wahl and demonstrates the power of grooming, and awards the top three dog makeovers with grant money for their local shelters (view all the finalists).

View hundreds of amazing shelter dog makeovers in the Dirty Dogs Before & After Photo Gallery (

“When it comes to adoption, first impressions are often a dog’s last chance. The unfortunate reality is that too many shelters dogs are being perceived as ‘damaged goods’ just because of their appearance,” says Steven Yde, division vice president for Wahl. “Crinolin’s story stands as proof that a good grooming can change a dog’s life in more ways than one. Not only do the dogs look better, but once freed from the dirty and often painfully matted fur, their personalities can really shine through.”

About the Dirty Dogs Contest

Millions of dogs enter shelters each year, and the vast majority of them are dirty and matted. Unfortunately, less than half of these dogs are getting the grooming they need. For the past seven years, it has been Wahl’s mission to draw attention to this problem with their annual Dirty Dogs Contest.

This year, more than 2,000 bottles of Wahl’s pet shampoos were donated to shelters in need, helping to wash and ready more than 20,000 dogs for adoption. In turn, the shelters posted hundreds of amazing transformations into the Dirty Dogs Before & After Photo Gallery ( Ten of the most dramatic makeovers from the gallery were selected to participate in the contest, and public votes determined the top three winners.

The Barking Lot in El Cajon, Calif., the rescue organization that saved Crinolin, will receive a $5,000 grant to further support their efforts. In addition, PawSwap of Greater Lafayette in Lafayette, Ind., the rescue who submitted second place winner Pepper, will receive a $2,000 grant, and third place dog Gabriel earned $1,000 for his rescue Mitchell County Animal Rescue in Spruce Pine, N.C.

“Grooming literally makes all the difference in determining whether a dog gets adopted,” explains Stacy Parmer, Director and Founder of The Barking Lot. “If a dog is neatly trimmed, she looks well-cared for and that seems to resonate with adopters. Our dogs are certainly more likely to seal the deal on adoption if they are well-groomed.”

View the contest winners’ and finalists’ before and after photos on the Wahl Pets Facebook Page. To see even more adoptable dogs visit the Dirty Dogs Before & After Photo Gallery. To purchase Wahl pet grooming products for your pet or for your favorite shelter, including shampoos, wipes and doggie deodorants, or to learn how to groom your own pet, visit And follow Wahl Pets on Facebook and Twitter.

About Wahl Pet Products

Wahl offers a full line of pet grooming solutions that make grooming from home safe, easy and enjoyable. The line includes hygiene products, clippers and accessories. Every year, Wahl is also dedicated to giving shelter animals a fresh start by donating pet grooming products to support adoption efforts and shelters devastated by natural disasters. For more information, visit

About is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that works to improve the health and well-being of people, pets, and the planet. It accomplishes this mission by partnering with charitable organizations and administering programs worldwide that address hunger and illness (particularly in women and children), promote education and literacy, feed and care for rescued animals in shelters and sanctuaries, and protect wildlife and restore the environment. Over the last 10 years, has granted over 175 million dollars to more than 5,000 charitable partners worldwide and created and operated several Signature Programs including Rescue Rebuild, Rescue Bank, and Girls’ Voices. You can learn more about on our website or by following us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.


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Download Before & After Photos of the Top 10 Dogs:


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