Little dogs are the new rock stars. They are pampered, primped, doted on, and toted around. They steal the spotlight wherever they go, and they are often decked to the nines … no, to the tens, in jewels and couture, and can be found kicking up their heels in a pimped-out ride. After all, they’re not just dogs, they’re celebrities, and those little paws can’t touch a dirty floor. Besides, what else commands as much attention as a sweet doggie face sticking out of a stunning shoulder tote?
“I think we live out our dreams through our dogs,” says Jayne Cohen of New Jersey and owner of two Yorkshire Terriers and a Toy Poodle.
“I would never spend the money for a real Louis Vuitton for myself — but for my dogs? In a heartbeat! We treat our dogs like our children, and the sky’s the limit. My dogs prefer the Louis Vuitton bag to the others. I think it smells expensive!”
These days, it’s not unusual to see $3,000 couture dog carriers in the fanciest of stores. Even the not-so-fancy dog carriers will easily set your bank account back $300. But the trend isn’t so much about the money as it is about the matching.
“I have many different bags for my small Yorkies,” says Yvonne Tolley of Michigan. “My Yorkies all have topknot bows to match their bags, and I also choose bags for color and print. For example, Daisy has a bag with daisies all over it. Pansy has one with pansies on it, and Glory has red, white, and blue everything.”
The best thing about dogs in bags isn’t that the bags are fabulous — which they are — or that they can match your shoes — which they can — but that you get to hide your dog and sneak him in on the down-low wherever you go.
“Most of the time people have no idea I have my dogs with me,” Cohen says. “One day I went to a grocery store and I had Tyler in one of my Sherpa bags that I wear on my shoulder, even though I know dogs are not allowed in grocery stores. Someone came close to me, and Tyler started to bark since he could see out of the bag. I started to cough really loud to muffle the noise of the barking. Unfortunately, it didn’t work.”
Owners of dogs who weigh more than 20 pounds are currently left out of this trend. But don’t feel excluded just yet — there’s always the doggie stroller. Although Louis Vuitton doesn’t make one yet, it can’t be far behind.
Nikki Moustaki is a freelance writer who lives in New York City.