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Tag: fashion

Matching dog and human pajamas may prove to be a hot holiday seller

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Out in public, putting a dog in an outfit that matches your own might be viewed as a tad eccentric.

But in the privacy of your home … that might be another matter.

Even one as dead set against using dogs to make a fashion statement as I am has to admit these matching dog-human pajamas come across as awfully cute and mighty cozy, especially when you throw in the fireplace.

pj3Apparently the public thinks so, too. They sold out nearly as soon as the company offering them put them on Instagram.

The Fab Dog website offers four styles, at $50 per set.

The company says they will have more in stock by Nov. 25 — in plenty of time for Christmas.

The human part of the flannel ensemble doesn’t come with a top — just the bottoms. They come in unisex sizing: small, medium, large and extra large. To determine the right size for your dog, measure his or her length from the base of the neck to just before their tail.

On its website, the company suggests (no surprise) getting a pair for every member of the family: “There’s no doubt that you won’t have a holiday card to trump all holiday cards with your dog in matching plaid pajamas.”

(Photos: From the Fab Dog website)

Today’s question: Can dogs be humiliated? The answer is tutu clear

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Attention all you “dog shamers,” all you dog dresser-uppers, all you dog-dyers, and anyone else who finds it fun and harmless to put your dog in a costume, use him to make a fashion statement, or ridicule him on social media.

You may be making him feel silly, and damaging his self esteem.

The Telegraph reports that animal charities in the UK are calling upon pet owners to cool it when it comes to decorating their dogs.

Among those quoted in the story was Caroline Kisko, the Kennel Club’s Secretary, who said the organization is “not greatly in favour of doing anything to dogs which makes them feel ‘silly.’ Dogs know when they are being laughed at.”

Not exactly a bold stance there — “not greatly in favour?” — but then again the Kennel Club sponsors Crufts, which in 2009 chose this poodle as winner in the Utility Group:

Apparently shaving a dog to resemble a bunch of poofy cotton balls is an accepted exemption from the “let’s not make dogs feel silly” rule.

Hypocrisy and poodle cuts aside, we think Kisco makes a valid point when she says dog owners need to strike a balance between what is done for the dog and what is mere “human vanity.”

“It is not a toy and we need to maintain that a dog is a dog,” she said. “Since we can’t ask them we should err on the side of caution … Why is it suddenly OK to dress a dog up in silly clothing or dye it?”

The answer is social media, which has made such practices, if not more frequent, at least more noticeable.

Decorating dogs is nothing new. I’d guess even ancient Egyptians did it — because it sounds like something right up their alley. But since Facebook and other social media came along, it has brought out the attention-seeker in all of us, to the point that — even if it’s not Halloween — we’ll post photos of our dogs looking silly or doing something silly.

doghamedThat’s not always “mocking” or “ridiculing” them, but often, particularly with the dog-shaming sites, it comes pretty close.

I’ve long had a problem with people dressing dogs for any purpose other than protection against the elements. I draw the line at bandanas, which my former dog almost always wore, and loved. My current dog, Jinjja, won’t let a bandana anywhere near his neck.

Some dogs tolerate getting adorned, receiving dye jobs, and funny haircuts; some don’t. But, as Kisco points out, even a dog who doesn’t visibly object may still be getting humiliated.

“Some will have a reasonably high level of tolerance for that sort of thing. You can get a dog that will love being the center of attention. But some will feel silly. Outfits come under the same banner – whether it’s a silly collar or whatever.

“If someone wants to put a bumblebee costume on their dog for Christmas, that’s fine, but take it off again. The dog doesn’t want to be a bumblebee …”

Paula Boyden, veterinary director at Dogs Trust, told The Telegraph that she had a problem with grooming techniques and dyes that could cause discomfort or irritation.

“It’s important that dog owners, and groomers, remember that dogs are not fashion accessories to have the latest trend tried out on them, grooming is for the dog’s needs rather than for the owner’s entertainment,” she said.

And Elisa Allen, a director at PETA in the UK, is quoted in the article as saying, “Dogs aren’t bonsai trees to be sculpted into shapes that please us. Many are nervous about being groomed, and dyeing them bright colors puts them at risk for allergic reactions and even toxic poisoning, which can have serious and even fatal consequences.”

Before you start thinking those groups have peacefully united to pursue this cause, keep in mind that the only place they seem to have come together is in the Telegraph article, and that — if there is any newsworthiness here — it’s that there is something all three groups agree on.

PETA regularly crashes Crufts, and the Dogs Trust has blamed the Kennel Club and Crufts for promulgating breed standards that don’t just make dogs look silly, but makes them unhealthy as well.

The article may make it sound as if the groups are harmoniously working hand in hand, but that’s about as likely as a bulldog doing ballet.

Who came up with this block-headed idea?

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Asian countries always seem to be out in front when it comes to new ways to manipulate dogs.

China brought us dogs dyed to resemble wild animals. South Korea was the first, and is still the only, country to clone a dog. Now, in another example of finding novel things to do with dogs — thankfully a less harmful one — groomers in Japan have come up with a new twist on canine hair styling, namely turning your dog into a cube.

Or, if you prefer, a circle.

square dog1It’s an official “craze” in Japan, or so the Daily Mail reported recently.

“It came about because people were always looking for more impressive haircuts,” said groomer Tain Yeh, 42, who runs a parlor in Taipei, “Somebody came up with the idea of shaping the dog like a hedge.”

And, given social media’s knack for getting us to do silly things, it’s catching on.

Many are now opting to give their dog the cubed look simply to get more likes and shares on social media sites, the Daily Mail reported.

Maybe it’s not as revolting as some other fads we fall for when it comes to our dogs, but it is another example of how some people try to turn dogs into something they aren’t — in this case, a hedge.

In my opinion, such fancy, boxy, geometric trims should be reserved for the boxwood and bonsai. Why would anyone want their dog to look like something growing in the garden, or that has stepped out of a primitive video game?

Cutting edge as it might be, I wonder why we can’t enjoy them just the way they are.

Haute dog! Company that caters to teens introduces line of canine couture

americanbeagleAmerican Eagle Outfitters Inc. (AEO), a clothing retailer that has always taken aim  at human teens, is trying to dig up some new business.

Amid declining clothing sales to human customers, it’s turning to dog clothes, and releasing a new line of canine couture today called American Beagle Outfitters, Bloomberg reports.

No joke.

But it did start out that way.

The American Beagle assortment began as an April Fool’s Day joke to raise money for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

But there was so much interest, the retailer decided to release a real line of canine clothing, including knit sweaters, puffer jackets and hats for dogs that match its holiday collection for people.

“Just in time for the holidays, you’ll be able to dress just like your best friend — man’s best friend that is,” Preston Konrad, style director at Pittsburgh-based American Eagle, said in a statement. “This fun collection reflects the iconic elements of the American Eagle Outfitters brand reimagined for our favorite furry friends.”

Like its peers in the teen-clothing business, American Eagle has seen slow sales — a phenomenon dog products seem to avoid. As the Bloomberg article points out, Americans were expected to fork over a whopping $350 million for pet costumes this Halloween.

And that’s in addition to normal everyday sales of doggie garb, now being pitched by everyone from Martha Stewart to Brett Michaels.

With winter and Christmas on the way, pitching puffer jackets to pooch owners makes sense, at least from a business perspective.

Items in the limited-edition doggie collection will be available online and in select American Eagle stores, with prices ranging from  $12.95 to $39.95.

(Photos: American Eagle Outfitters)

Dogs have always been in Vogue

1930voguecover“The next best thing to having the world at your feet is to have a dog at your heels,” Vogue — the magazine — observed in 1930.

Since 1909, dogs have played a role in the magazine’s portrayal of all things glamorous — as companions to style icons and royalty, as inspiration for fiction, as art (both paintings and photographs), and even appearing on the cover from time to time.

Now their contribution to the magazine has been captured in a book, “Dogs in Vogue: A Century of Canine Chic.”

Author Judith Watt came up with the idea as she was sifting through 100-year’s worth of Vogue (the British edition) while doing research for a  special millennial issue in 1999.

“I came across something quite unexpected among the fashion photographs in the magazine’s archive: thousands of canines,” Watt writes in an article in the UK Independent.

In the past century, dogs have served Vogue as “companions, accessories, barely-legible scribbles, caricatures, stars of the grandest photographic portraits and of whimsical fashion illustrations. They are the subject of essays and sometimes treated as celebrities. Taken together, the best of the photographs and features provide a fascinating record of society’s changing preferences for breeds and the evolving role of dogs in women’s lives.”

“Anyone labouring under the delusion that dogs are just man’s best friend and women prefer cats will think again.”

Company unveils dog, camouflage Snuggies

The fashion industry elite have gathered in New York for Fashion Week, but I’m not sure how many of them made it to the Snuggie runway show.

Allstar Products Group, LLC, a global leader in the development, branding, marketing and distribution of consumer products, held a Snuggie Fashion Show in New York City yesterday to introduce the “next generation” of the Snuggie blanket.

The runway show featured both Snuggies for humans and the new Snuggie for dogs.

The Snuggie Fashion Show featured lights, cameras and glamorous models — human and canine — as they struck a pose in new Snuggie, according to a company press release.

But wait, there’s more.

Snuggie makers unveiled a number of new limited edition designs — including zebra and leopard animal prints.  Also introduced was the “luxury microplush” Snuggie, with extra roomy pockets, and new colors that include black, purple (attention Ravens fans), camel and hunter green. Also being introduced in limited numbers is a camouflage Snuggie and a tie dye “Snuggadelic Snuggie.”

Dog Snuggies ($9.99 for all sizes) are available only in pink and blue.

Another dog needlessly dyed

aubrey-dogSinger Aubrey O’Day says she thinks it’s perfectly OK to dye her dog.

The former Danity Kane singer regularly changes the color of her one-year-old Maltese, named Ginger.

“She likes to have looks,” O’Day, 25, explained to  Usmagazine.com. “It actually seems like such a taboo weird thing nowadays, but if you research online, you will see a whole underworld of dogs who are dyed.”

O’Day says she changes her dog’s appearance “for different occasions,” revealing that she recently dyed the pup green because she “loves the (Boston) Celtics.”

“She sits on my lap, and I have a brush, and I paint it on and use foils.” Ginger, she says, “loves attention and because she’s colored and has different outfits, she gets so much of it. She prefers it.”

I think it’s a safe bet that it’s not Ginger who’s seeking the attention here. And assuming the dog likes being dyed just because she doesn’t object makes about as much sense as O’Day’s if-it’s-on-the-Internet-it-must-be-ok philosophy.

What is it that makes celebrities think that the animal kingdom exists to provide them with fashion accessories?

(Photo: Joe Corrigan/Getty Images, via USMagazine.com)