handbag dogs abandoned toy

In another sad example of animals being treated as things (a fashion accessory in this case), the Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity has reported that in the past year  over 400 “toy dogs” were handed in to their sanctuary, a 44% increase on the year before.

The “toy” or “Handbag” dog trend was spurred by celebrities like Paris Hilton, who were seen parading them around in their $1,000 handbags, often dressed up in ridiculous little outfits. Fans quickly followed suit and the demand for these dogs skyrocketed over the past few years.

However, the problem of using animals as things is that no matter how small or cute they are, they are still animals — they need to be fed, walked, groomed and taken to the vet. This realization appears to have led hundreds of people to abandon their little animal accessories in shelters, almost as quickly as their handbags have gone out of style.

On a positive note, let’s hope this unfortunate trend helps people realize that bringing home a companion animal (no matter how small or cute) is not a decision that should be taken lightly. Moreover, let’s hope these abandoned dogs are adopted soon and find the joy and comfort they deserve in some loving homes, and not in designer handbags.

For more information, read the story in The Daily Mail.

Dog Image Source: Alan Levine (via flickr)