In my April 17 column in the Japan Times, I introduced Sase Eiko 佐瀨栄子, a “pet beauty artist” who is booked a month in advance for the high-fashion manicures she does on dogs. That’s her in the photo below, at work on a client.
Here’s the finished manicure, which is called “dog nail art” ドッグネイルアート in Japanese:
“You have to work fast on dogs, because they don’t stay still, and their claws are much narrower than a human fingernail,” she told me. Despite the space limitations, she’s done even small dog’s claws up up with flowers, hearts, paw prints and even Christmas trees and snowmen.
Sase uses nail color formulated for dogs with more pigment to cover darker claws. It’s supposedly safe even if dogs lick it. She charges between 3,000 to 5,000 yen ($35-58) to do both front and back paws, and says she gets a lot of requests to do up dog’s claws to match their owner’s nail jobs. That’s a stone glued onto in the center of the flower:
Sase is a sought-after trimmer instructor and chair of Pet Esthé International Association, Japan. She must have good eyes and a steady hand: there’s a photo on her blog of the tiny designs she’s painted on grains of rice!