Florida animal shelter warns owners against using human hair dye on pets

LARGO, Fla. (WSVN) — A central Florida animal shelter is warning pet owners about the dangers of using human hair dye on their four-legged friends.

Pinellas County Animal Services posted heartbreaking photos on Facebook Tuesday night, showing a tiny 5-pound Maltese mix that had been dyed purple.

The shelter said the dog had been brought into their emergency clinic three months ago as an injured stray. The pup was limp and listless, with swollen-shut eyes and visibly-burned skin, Fox 13 reports.

Veterinarians didn’t know if she would survive. But after she made it through the night, they gave the dog, nicknamed Violet, more intensive treatment for several days before deciding to shave off the purple fur in order to further assess the damage to her skin. But as they began shaving while she was under anesthesia, the little dog’s skin started peeling off. That’s when the staff realized her condition was far worse than initially thought.

Violet required months of care, including antibiotics, pain medication and even honey treatments for her skin. Amazingly, the pup did not suffer any long-term injuries, and has since been adopted by a loving family.

The shelter said they decided to share the little dog’s story on social media to warn pet owners against dyeing their animals.

“Do NOT, under any circumstances, use hair color intended for humans on your pets,” they wrote in their Facebook post. “Chemicals in hair dye are TOXIC causing a wide array of external injury to your pet – possible burns, blindness and because an animal’s first instinct is to lick, it can cause poisoning or internal burns. Just don’t.”

To see the rest of the photos of Violet’s progress, click below. (WARNING: graphic images)