Skip to content

Dog Clothing: So Wrong, In So Many Ways

There’s a dog clothing boutique on every corner here in Tokyo, but unfortunately, no sign of the fashion police. I can’t help but feel that it’s time to make a few citizen’s arrests…

For better or worse, for richer or poorer, in good taste and in bad…
Extra years in the slammer for doing this to a shiba inu!
In her previous life, this dog sent out Xmas letters every year with all her children dressed in matching outfits. (You know who you are. Repent while there is still time.)
No. No no no no no no.
I have a bad feeling about this.

All photos are from the Japanese dog magazines Wan and Shiba Inu. 

Read a novel set in Tokyo

When Detective Kenji Nakamura’s phone rings with the news that his mother’s death wasn’t an accident, his life begins to unravel…read more


Jonelle Patrick View All

Writing mystery books set in Tokyo is mostly what I do, but I also blog about the odd stuff I see every day in Japan. I'm a graduate of Stanford University and the Sendagaya Japanese Institute in Tokyo, and a member of the International Thriller Writers, the Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters In Crime. When I'm not in Tokyo, I live in San Francisco. I also host a travel site called The Tokyo Guide I Wish I'd Had, so if you're headed to Japan and want to check out the places I take my friends when they're in town, take a look!

12 thoughts on “Dog Clothing: So Wrong, In So Many Ways Leave a comment

  1. The first photo of the Shibas are cute! The costumes are very kawaii ❤

    But I also have to think those poor shibas… the one in the blue costume is thinking, "Why me?" My shiba would hate me if I even tried to put something like that on her. Lol!

    • So true! In fact, although hardly a dog goes out for walkies on the streets of Tokyo without some kind of costume on, I’ve noticed that people rarely dare to dress up their shibas. Shibas are the only kind of dogs generally exempt from this kind of humiliation, and I was shocked when I opened up the shiba magazine and saw…LEIA!

      • Do the people there dress dogs up like its a common thing? Or it it like the US where people think the owner is a crazy dog person that dotes & spoils their dog too much if they are dressed up in outfits or costumes and dogs?

        I’m not surprised that most Shibas are spared from that embarrassment, mine makes me think Shibas are very aristocrat. Very prim and proper. That they are too good for such foolish things. Lol!

      • It’s super common for dogs to be dressed in some kind of clothing here! Many are “normal” dog coats, but it’s not at all uncommon to see them in costumes that turn them into bunnies or bumblebees or worse. The one exception is the husky club, which appears in Yoyogi Park dressed for special occasions. I’ve seen them as Manga Schoolgirl Dogs and dressed in kimono for girls’ day, and they looked magnificent!

  2. Ah, I am so guilty of this….in fact, I just bought my Shih-Tzu puppy her Halloween costume. (It’s an A.C.M.E. rocket which straps to her back and has a little orange poof ball at the end of the fuse. I couldn’t help myself, it was so cute and adorable lol! It perfectly suits her, since she is a little firecracker)

    • Okay, I admit, I think I would like that costume! Besides, it’s for Halloween. Costumed dogs get a pass on Halloween! The best thing I saw was the husky club out for a walk in Yoyogi Park last October, all wearing superhero costumes with capes.

  3. eh, not limited to Japan… and a dang good business for that matter. While I rarely dress up my French Bull, Boston Terrier, or 3 Frosties (French Boston crosses- entirely accidental!),
    they do look darn cute in stuff… hmm, the designer in me sees an opportunity I should glomp on to!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s