By now it is an iconic scene, Paris Hilton carrying her dog Tinkerbell the tiny Chihuahua, around in her "Chewy Vuitton" purse type carrier. It did not take long for the "purse dog" craze to catch fire, especially once Nicole Richie, Jessica Simpson and Britney Spears jumped on the band wagon. Of course, once the "purse dog" craze was born it was just a matter of time before the actual purse morphed into a must have accessory for the tiny dog's owners. At one time it seemed like every woman in Manhattan was sporting a tiny dog with it's head peeking out of a fancy bag. Now the upscale carrier is a must have accessory for owners who want to take their little pet out for a walk without using a leash!
Paris brought us this phenomenon in 2008. Today, the world market for pet accessories is expected to reach over $17 billion. Some feel it is because the dog has been brought to the forefront by celebrities. Who can forget watching Jill Zarin's dog Ginger running the show in the Zarin New York penthouse, and Lisa Vanderpump's Jiggy dresses better than she does! Today's owners tend to humanize their dogs. It is not unusual to see dogs lounging in front of our favorite restaurants and boutiques. Perhaps this is why the dog carriers we see today are a far cry from the metal cages we used to know, when they were basically used to transport dogs to the vet or groomer.
From apparel to bedding the canines of today certainly have it made. The list below represents purse type carriers that can fit one or two small (toy size) dogs, or roughly eight pounds. Many of them also add outside pockets so that you can carry your personal belongings with you and not have to carry yet another bag. Some of these are from well known famous designers and others are from smaller companies that do custom designs catering only to pets. In any case, whereas some trends disappear as quickly as they came onto the scene, the "purse dog" doesn't seem to be going anywhere, and when it does go somewhere, it is certainly in high style.
9 Petote Marlee Bag: $275
This is a dog bag made to look like a designer bag. It is done in quilted style and also is very lightweight. Due to its flaps that roll down on either end, it is a great bag for sneaking your dog into stores or restaurants, where he may not be totally welcome. This bath as a top zipper which makes getting your pooch in and out very easy. Vented on both ends, it has removable faux fur bedding and an interior safety strap as an extra safety precaution. Petote was founded in 2001 by Janet Lee Mandell. Celebrity clients include Missy Elliott, Halle Berry, Julianne Moore and many others.
8 Black Fleur De Lis Ed Hardy Dog Carrier: $280
This bag has a faux Croc front insert and a faux snakeskin top flap and the custom Fleur de Lis patent exterior. It also has a zip around side mesh opening, offering another easy access for sliding your puppy in and out. Also included is a washable interior signature printed lining and a cushioned bottom. It comes with a safety strap and a Christian Audigier printed satin dust cover.
7 Cece KENT Taos Suede Pet Carrier: $490
You would never expect to see a dog peeking out of this chic looking bag. This airline approved carrier bag has a removable padded insert, a safety leash and and two exterior pockets for personal storage, making it the only bag you need to carry when traveling with your dog. The suede Taos bag also has privacy flaps that fold up and fasten so that puppy can stick his head out! It is trimmed with antique brass detailing. Cece KENT began her company when she was unable to find the perfect accessories for her Shih Tzus Cali and Coco. Cece KENT Pet Fashions are regularly featured in the heart of the Metropolitan Pavilion during the two day fashion exhibition and show.
6 Tail-Bow Swarovski Heart Ultra-Suede Carrier: $650
This elegant bag is designed by Susan Lanci. The exterior of this gorgeous dog carrier is made of soft suede and the interior is lined with a plush faux mink. The piece' de resistance of this pet tote is the Swarovski crystal hearts that adorn the outside. Other nice features are the three inch wide shoulder straps, a tether strap to clip onto your dog's leash or harness and a matching super soft blanket made with the same faux mink material as the interior. This bag can hold up to eight pounds.
5 Coats N Totes "Bella" Dog Carrier: $800
This is one high end dog carrier. Made of the finest in Italian leather, this bag is trimmed in large Swarovski crystals in both the front and back and has two large pockets on either side. It includes an interior soft padding and a collar snap as well. It also comes in a variety of colors other than black, including pink or tan.
4 Yvette Ruta Luxury Rock and Roll Carrier: $1,440
Surely your dog will rock out in this ultimate rock and roll designer dog carrier. This bag is completely lined in faux fur. Each carrier is hand painted, studded and then genuine Swarovski crystals are placed in different areas on the bag. Cool chains hang down on the outside and USA piping finish off the esthetic details. Like most other carrier bags, this one has an inside leash attachment. This product is specially made to order and can be personalized. Yvette Ruta began her business in 2012 and specializes in all types of luxury pet couture.
3 Gucci Dog Carrier: $1,650
When we start putting well known designer names, especially those like Gucci and Louis Vuitton, to these luxury dog carriers, prices really start to soar. Gucci actually makes five different models of dog carriers. This particular bag sports the iconic Gucci beige and ebony fabric with brown leather trim, topped off with the instantly recognizable green, red and green handles. It has a zip top opening with breathable mesh panels on the sides. The interior cushion is removable and washable. As always, a Gucci bag is timeless and this dog carrier is no exception.
Probably one of the most popular among celebs, this dog carrier has been seen by millions around the world, toting the pets of Paris Hilton, LaToya Jackson and Britney Spears, among other top celebrities. This bag is done in monogram canvas and is made specifically to be scratch resistant as well as very resistant to water. This bag is quality of the utmost and we expect nothing less from this designer. Many pet owners say they wish their boots were as moisture resistant as this carrier. It has a breathable mesh window with a roll up flap and a zip around closure. It is trimmed in the well-known brass pieces that highlight other Louis Vuitton famous bags.
2 Gucci Leather Dog Carrier: $2,600
This particular Gucci dog carrier was designed as part of the new 500 Gucci collection, and is the only dog carrier they do in leather. This collection was a pairing of two of Italy's most iconic brands, Gucci and Fiat. Your dog will truly be stepping out in the epitome of modern style when he hits the streets in this haute carrier. Made in Italy, this bag features a zip top opening and adjustable and detachable shoulder strap. Done in black leather, it is trimmed with the signature green, red, green web. It has a detachable identification tag and a removable and washable interior cushion.
1 Ralph Lauren Crocodile Dog Carrier: $18,000
This is by far and away the most expensive dog carrier on the market. In tradition with the high end quality that Ralph Lauren is known for, this bag is constructed with hand-selected 100% African crocodile, which most likely accounts for it's out of this world price. Lightly padded with a cotton twill interior, it has a zip around opening at the top and at one end, providing two ways for accessing your pet. Mesh paneling and an optional covered pocket are at the other end. The two top purse handles feature a luggage tag, a functional brass lock and a detachable key fob.