Ruth Regina likes to say her business is going to the dogs, but it’s actually just going to their heads. A wig maker to the stars, Regina is now designing hairpieces for dogs – braids, curls, and extensions that can be dyed, highlighted and styled to order for pampered pets.
“I just see now that the little dogs are being carried around in Chanel carriers. They’re wearing tiaras and sunglasses and visors,” she says. “Dogs are just little people in fur coats.” Regina, an eighth-generation wig maker, got her break during the golden age of television. She was the wig master and make-up artist for The Jackie Gleason Show, which filmed in Miami Beach from 1962-70. She was also in charge of beauty for the Miss Universe pageant from 1959-72.
The “Yappy Hour,” a cascade of curls, can be custom made with synthetic or human hair and dyed any color, including pastels. With openings for ears and an elastic band to hold it in place, it’s a good choice for hairless dogs, she explains.
The “Peek a Bow Wow” can fall down over part of a dog’s face, giving a glamorous look reminiscent of 1940s movie star Veronica Lake. It’s a good style for “any dog that has feeling, you know, a sexy dog,” she explains. “There’s some dogs that have the come-hither look,” she says.
There’s also the “Rover R-r-r-rug,” straight hair that can be used as bangs, and “Buddy Braids,” good for a dog with a little hair since they are held on with clips, Regina says.
She did her first dog hair design years ago for her niece’s basset hound, to coordinate with an Easter ensemble and they cost from a mere $18 into the thousands!
And if you’re looking for a different kind of “hair piece” for yourself, or just tired of spending hours with the lint brush, now you can wear loose hairs from your pets proudly, even to work. VIP Fibers in California will spin your dog or cat’s fur into yarn that has been turned into sweaters, afghans, teddy bears, “fur-get me not flowers” and “pettable picture frames,” even bikinis! FYI, according to the conversion tables on their website, for a scarf you need approximately 10 ounces of hair. Wow!