The Coolest-Looking Dogs You’ve Ever Seen
The documentary “Well Groomed,” available July 21, features the world’s best dog-groomers. Here, master groomer Angela Kumpe walks us through her most eye-catching creations.
There will be dogs. So many strange, wonderful, extraordinary dogs.
Dog: Hero (Standard Poodle)
The mermaid design was planned out over a span of about 2 years. For this design to work as planned, I had to grow Hero’s hair on his topknot for over two years. My idea was to make the dog completely disappear into the design. All the colors used were Opawz pet hair dye. The dye job was done in 1-2 hour sessions over several weeks. This design is also featured in Well Groomed.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL POODLE
Dog: Gus (Standard Poodle)
This design was done in honor of my love for nature, large-game animals, and our national parks. The design was started with the placement of the elk on the back end of one side. The ram was the second part of the design. The wow factor of this design was the horns on the ram. Again, this design needed over a year to grow in the right amount of coat. To get the shape of the faces and muscle tone of each animal, I worked with a taxidermist. The taxidermist also supplied me with the glass eyes used in the design.
Dog: Moses (Moyen Poodle)
This design was actually planned because I had to work around old dye that was still in Moses’ hair. His head was orange from a previous design so I had to find something that would either require his head to be orange or a color that would cover orange, such as red or black. One of my employees was a huge horror movie fan and suggested Pennywise from the movie IT. After looking at photos and movie clips I went with it. It turned out to be one of my favorite designs. All the colors in this design were Opawz pet hair dye. My costume was easy—I just ordered a yellow raincoat and some red balloons to pull the design together.
Dog: Gus (Standard Poodle)
Snow White was one of my favorite childhood movies and I thought the dwarfs would be fun to add into the design. One of my favorite parts of competing with this design was the presentation. I handed out apples to other competitors who humored me and played along with my skit. The groomers pretended to eat the apples and fall on stage. The design was colored with Opawz pet hair dyes and the dye job was done in 1-2 hour sessions over a couple weeks time. The blackbird on the head was added later. It was so fun to watch him run around with the bluebird on his tail flapping around like it was flying.
BUFFALO (“CHEROKEE HERITAGE”)
Dog: Josh (Standard Poodle)
This design was in honor of my mother and my Aunt Marline because they were so very proud of our Cherokee heritage. The first time I did this design my aunt was going through treatments for breast cancer. She traveled with me to be a part of my presentation, along with my mom and dad. The original design had a pink cancer ribbon on the hip of the buffalo. Josh was done as the buffalo 7 years later after my aunt had unfortunately passed from the cancer, and I also lost my mother. I changed the design by taking away the cancer ribbon and adding a Native American chief on the hip.
Dog: Fantasia (Standard Poodle)
This design was inspired by my Southern heritage and my love of the outdoors and hunting. After receiving many negative comments on social media about hunting, I decided to dedicate my next theme to it. My dad traveled with me and assisted in my presentation, as with many of my other designs. The design plan on this one was tricky for a groomer. I wanted to make Fantasia, my poodle, look like a Walker Coonhound. This would require me to shave my poodle’s beautiful topknot to make her appear like a smooth-coated dog. The problem was that I wanted to make a huge change on stage so I did not want to cut it ahead of time. I was so nervous that she wouldn’t look like a coonhound and that the judges wouldn’t understand the design. When I started shaving her head on stage, with an audience of all groomers, you could hear the gasp from the crowd. The judge walked up and started looking at me and the dog like I had lost my mind. I told her, “Don’t judge me yet, I’m not finished!” to which she replied, “Looks like a hound dog!” I simply giggled and thought, whew!