Gucci’s new pet lifestyle collection is recently trending on social media platforms including Twitter, Instagram, and the Chinese microblogging service Weibo. The most disputable and most expensive product is a $7,500 pet bed. People are shocked that there are beds designed for pets, doubting why these pet beds are worth this money, and who is paying for a $7,500 pet bed. But more people are teasing and lamenting that most humans actually live much worse than dogs and cats.
In addition to the astounding pet bed, Gucci has also released collars, leashes, travel bowls, and baskets for pets. Pets can also wear their own polo shirts, waterproof jackets, and other clothing as their owners do.
The collection is designed to meet the needs of owners and pets to match their "parent-child" outfits. Celine also launched a pet collection at the end of June, with the design director's dog Elvis modeling in the campaign.
In fact, people who design and consume these pet luxuries are personifying pets. Using a hundreds-of-dollars bowl, dressing a thousands-of-dollars coat, and jumping on a $7,500 bed, humans are assuming that their pets would be as happy as them.
The emergence of pet luxuries is a recreation of Beverly Hills Chihuahua. The movie opens with a wave of whispers of a Beverly woman carrying a fancy Louis Vuitton bag into a salon. The groomer in the salon was nervous not for the lady but for her dog Chole, the dog protagonist in this movie.
Beverly Hills pets live their daily lives like noblewomen. They wear sophisticated shoes lying on the Cashmere sofa; they dress in a swimsuit to cool off by the pool; they are often specially dressed for a trip. On top of that, their little paws rarely touch the ground. If it is a walking distance, they will be shuttled by their owners in a customized basket.
Pet baskets emerged along with the modern way of travel. In the 1890s, French brand Goyard became the first luxury brand to venture into the field of pet products with the launch of the “Chic Du Chien” series (dog-friendly fashion).
To offer their guests a solution for outside shopping with their pets, Louis Vuitton reinforced the bottom of the custom collection tote, adding a lift-off breathable curtain ventilation mesh and a removable washable lining.
These products are particularly suitable for small pets, such as Chihuahuas, Pit Bull, and any kind of cat. Many actresses are loyal customers of these luxurious pet baskets, and they will request a leather name tag embossed with their pets’ names in the bag.
Lady Gaga’s dog Asia is probably the first generation of animal celebrities on Instagram. Every time Lady Gaga takes it to an event, Asia wears a diamond necklace with different accessories, whereas People for Ethnically Treat Animals (PETA), an animal protection NGO, has accused Lady Gaga more than once of abusing animals because Asia is unlikely to like these heavy human objectives.
Nevertheless, people who design these crazy pet luxuries may care more about pets than their customers. Karl “Kaiser” Lagerfeld has a cat named Choupette. He eats with Karl at the table. He has two favorite foods--chicken pie and fish meatballs. Sometimes he can get a spoonful of the finest caviar.
Karl used to take the cat to taste the cooking of Parisian chefs at all levels, to have a “Choupette sandwich” at Café de la Fleur; to have a “Choupette boiled egg” in Le Voltaire; if Choupette has some indigestion, he will have a special cocktail at Colette water bar--a quarter of Château de Château Mercier wine mixed with mineral water from Switzerland, England, Germany, and Sweden.
On top of that, Marc Jacobs has a bulldog named Neville who always wears fashionable clothes and appears on the covers of fashion magazines with supermodels; Thom Browne’s handbag based on Hector Browne, his Dachshund, has become an iconic piece of the brand; Valentino has six pugs who have been teased in the TV drama “Made in Italy.”
Fashionista, a website focusing on fashion big data, predicted that the global pet products market is expected to reach $202.6 billion by 2025. This trend can be largely attributed to Millennial and Gen Z who are becoming pet owners earlier and more frequently than past generations.
A report by Roland Berger and Taobao, the Chinese largest online shopping service, shows that the consumption related to pets has become one of the most assertive and fastest growing points among young Chinese while China’s draconian COVID policy is still influencing people.
It is not difficult to learn that youngsters cherish animals' emotional values more than humans' love. Hence, youngsters are more willing to consume for their pets. However, a $7,500 pet bed is a pipe dream for most people anyway. The target customers of pet luxuries are not office workers, and those who will eventually pay for them are those who already have had the habit of consuming luxuries.
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