Since its inception in 2010, the online maketplace Lyst has become a go-to shopping destination. The web-based boutique is known for offering a huge selection of clothing, accessories, and shoes, but a new and unexpected product category surfaced on the website, and people aren't happy about it. Lyst has recently decided to add "Dogs" to its offerings.
It appeared that the U.K. retailer was selling 32 different kinds of dog breeds under its "Canine Collection." The breeds were arranged much like its clothing in categories ranging in size from small to X-large. "Find the right dog to match your wardrobe from our curated selection of breeds that are as stylish as they are loveble," the website stated.
As to be expected, many were not happy about the inclusion of puppies as a fashion accessory on the U.K. retailer's site.
Following the backlash, Lyst addressed many of the tweets, claiming there would be a refund policy if customers were not happy with their product and that the dogs were well taken care of.
It even issued a statement to Yahoo! that said it was surprised by the backlash."We were surprised to see the negative reactions on social media — the very space where dogs are paraded as accessories the most," a spokesperson for Lyst said. "Who doesn't love a cute puppy in a handbag? We're just helping you buy both pieces of the Instagram shot at once."
While it seemed Lyst was serious about selling the puppies online, it was later revealed that the "Canine Collection" was really a hoax to bring attention to the large amount of dogs who are abandoned each year.
Many people will be relieved to find that the site now reads, "thousands of puppies and dogs are bought and abandoned every year. According to Blue Cross, the number of small 'handbag' dogs and puppies needing to be re-homed has increased by 120% in the last five years, with 'fashionable' toy dog breeds in particular being given up in record numbers."