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Sexy beast: 5 Tips to makeover your pet

Rose Hamilton is EVP and Chief Pet Parenting Expert for Pet360, the leading network of online resources for pet parents.

Put a swagger in your pet's step with these must-know pet makeover tips.

We all love a good makeover story, right? There are countless television shows and talk show segments dedicated to jaw-dropping transformations, and viewers religiously tune in to see those big-reveal moments. Because let's face it, watching a woman (or a man) gain confidence by making a few small changes is uplifting and inspiring.

Our dogs and cats can benefit from makeovers, too, and a little creative grooming can put some serious swagger in your pet's step. Here are a few of my favorite pet makeover tips to get your four-legged friends looking good and feeling great.

Posh wash

A wash in the tub is the first step to any successful pet makeover. But instead of using your usual bargain-brand pet shampoo, try splurging on salon-quality products that smell amazing and help promote a healthy, fluffy coat. Brands loved by humans, such as Paul Mitchell and Bed Head, have launched their very own pet lines (John Paul and Pet Head) and infuse their products with ingredients like tea tree oil, lemongrass and mango.

Follow up with a conditioner to keep your pet's coat shiny and easy to de-tangle. This finishing step also helps add moisture back into the skin. Look for products with ingredients such as oatmeal, shea butter and natural oil extracts for best results.

Tip: Don’t use shampoos or conditioners meant for humans on your pets, and discuss your pick with your veterinarian beforehand to make sure it’s a good fit for your furry companions.

PHOTOS: Rachael Ray Gives Shelter Cats Makeovers

Give your pet a blow-out

Blow-dry bars are all the rage, so why not take the trend to your pet? Special dryers designed specifically for pets make blow-drying your dog a whole lot easier than simply using a towel. This method helps alleviate tangles and makes drying long-haired dogs a breeze (pun intended).

Using a human-grade hairdryer on a pet is not recommended, since the heat can easily make a dog or cat uncomfortable. Also, if your pet shows signs of stress and is scared by the dryer, it's a better idea to stick to the traditional towel method.

Get new threads

The clothes might make the man, but a cute collar makes the pet. For an affordable and easy makeover, try updating your dog's or cat's collar with something eye-catching and fun. Think about human fashion trends (nautical, anyone?) and reference those trends when picking out the perfect neck decor for your pet.

If your pet doesn't mind, you can also add apparel into the mix. Several companies make really cute clothes for dogs and cats that go beyond tutus and onesies. Think hip summer tank tops, cozy fall sweaters and stylish toggle coats for cooler temps.

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Give your pet a manicure

Photo credit: Malcolm MacGregor/Moment/Getty Images

Add a pop of color to your pet's paws and give your friend a special spa-like manicure. Start by trimming and filing down your dog's or cat's nails and clip any long hair between their paw pads to avoid matting. Then use a pet-safe nail polish to gently paint your pet's nails with a bright color. Pet nail polish is non-toxic and easily wears off, so it's a fun beauty trick to use for a special night on the town.

It goes without saying, but don't use human-grade nail polish or nail polish remover on your pets, and make sure to stop the painting process if your pet shows any signs of distress or discomfort.

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Spritz on a scent

While you shouldn't spray your own signature scent onto your pets, there are multiple options on the market for yummy-smelling pet sprays and colognes to cover up your dog's or cat's stinky scent. Many of these pet perfumes use pet-safe essential oils such as lavender, rose, grapefruit, orange, bergamot, patchouli, sandalwood and jasmine to mask odor and freshen a dog's coat between baths.

Note: Not all essential oils are safe to use on pets, so read the ingredient label carefully and speak with your vet before spraying a pet perfume on your cat or dog. Make sure to watch out for signs of skin irritation, and stop using the product if your pet has a bad reaction.

Follow these five simple makeover tips, and your dog or cat will be runway ready in no time!

Photo credit: pyotr021/iStock/360/Getty Images
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