This is my first product review so please bear with me. I was introduced to the Happy Hoodie when I interviewed Meghan Sogge. Meghan uses the Happy Hoodie on her senior clients during grooming. Not only did I immediately add the product to the store, I ordered one for myself, Smokey and Bandit.
I went on their site to learn more about the product. They state the Happy Hoodie has a multitude of benefits both at home and in a grooming. salon. Since our other blog talked about the benefits from grooming, I am going to go into a bit more detail about their "at home" claims. Below are their claims on the web site.
"Happy Hoodie was originally created to calm and protect dogs from the loud noise and high-pressured air associated with force drying in the grooming salon. It proved to be so effective at relieving anxiety that it is now used to help calm pets during any stressful situation, whether it's at the grooming salon or in the home." At home benefits include:
|Noisy environment||Toenail trimming|
|Blow drying||Paw Handling|
|Vet exams||Aerating the ears|
I originally only planned on testing it for drying after grooming but was able to throw in an unexpected fireworks review.
The product comes in a 2-pack (small and Large) which one of the 2 will accommodate almost any dog. Smokey is 25 pounds and used the small and Bandit is 35 pounds and wore the Large. It is a thick compressive material that looks like a snood.The product is terry like and appears to be very absorbent and thick. There is one seam that is rolled into the interior of the product and doesn't appear to have any "edge" that would make the product uncomfortable for a dog. The product will stretch to fit snug but you do feel a bit bad for the dogs when you slide it on. (think getting stuck in a turtleneck shirt)
Smokey and Bandit have sensitive skin and allergies so the get a weekly bath. I have typically towel dried them as best as possible and let them go because they are terrified of my hair dryer. When we wrapped up bath time, I pulled out the Happy Hoodies and slid them onto their heads. They were not overjoyed to have them on but played along and didn't try to take them off. One by one I got them out of the tub and towel dried them. Then the true test came; I plugged in the hairdryer. I started with Bandit because he is a bit more chill. As per Meg's recommendations, I started drying his butt first. He sat pretty patiently and I am sure the treats I was plying him with didn't hurt either. Smokey didn't crawl under the counter like he normally does while I was drying Bandit which I took as a great sign. Since I was washing 2 dogs at one time, I didn’t dry him fully as to not tempt fate with Smokey.
Smokey is a bit more hyper and scared of electronics and such so I knew this may be a bit more challenging. He didn't flinch when I turned the dryer on, but he wasn't very comfortable with the air blowing on him. I tried a few different settings to see if he calmed a bit as well as continued the treat parade. I didn't spend as much time drying him as I did Bandit because I felt horrible that he was uncomfortable with the dryer.
Overall, I would call it a success and will continue to use it and desensitize Smokey to the feeling of the air in him.
Labor Day weekend was upon us and I could hear a party of some sort on the golf course my house backs to. We were sitting in the living room a little after 8 pm when the first firework went off. (Mind you we had no clue they were coming.) The boys start to freak out because they are terrified and are doing their best to hide inside the couch. I sit with them and try to hold and comfort them to no avail. Then I remembered the Happy Hoodie is supposed to help with loud noises, so I ran and got them. In this case I don't know if it was just too late in the game, but it didn't appear to calm down Bandit at all. He was just sitting there shaking uncontrollably. The jury is out if it will help the boys with fireworks in the future. Maybe if the hoodie is in before the noise starts it will be more effective.
To wrap up this review, it is a good product and I will continue to use and test the product out on the boys even though they usually aren't the happiest with it on.