In 2017, @dachihype, a brown and black Shiba, posted her first IG Post. Small, fierce and filled with style, Dachi established her look, voice and content from the start, creating a look book for streetwear dogs. Unlike other IG pet pages where cute filters and captions ruled, Dachi aimed to create cool, clever and relevant content stre
etwear audiences would love. More importantly, Dachi became one of the earliest risers in the new breed of social influencers: Hypepets.
All Bark, All Bite: The Infiltration of Streetwear into the Pet Market
Back in 2000s, it would be unthinkable to see a luxury brand taking inspiration and visual cues from streetwear. But now, as Virgil Abloh establishes his name as Louis Vuitton’s artistic director, the lines between luxury and streetwear are starting to blur, and streetwear’s reach continues to spread. This growth has even given rise to new markets, especially in the pet industry.
In 2015, the streetwear dog market was non-existent, virtually nothing could be found in terms of leashes, clothing and gear for pets. Three years later, the industry for streetwear for pets is flush with streetwear-inspired pet clothing, toys, bowls, Etc that take inspiration from streetwear brands and transform them into pet clothing and accessories. For example, Pawmain created a Pupreme hoodie sweater for dogs, a piece of gear that riffs on Supreme’s iconic logo, or Fresh Pawz’s Hype Camo harnesses and leash modeled after BAPE’s legendary camo skin.
But why is any of this important? Well, for influencers like @Dachihype, @halfbearhalfamazing, and many others, the rise of the brands will help secure newer, more lucrative content deals for brand promotions. For brands like Fresh Pawz and Pawmain, the influencers further establish and prove the health of this emerging market of streetwear fashion for pets.
Establishing The Hypepet Name
For anyone looking to establish a name for their pets, the market is in its early stages, allowing for newcomers to create followers quickly and spread their clout easier than oversaturated markets. So, what makes a pet a hypepet?
Well, for starters hypepets differ in both their look and content that traditional pet pages create. Sure, the two share similar traits but for hypepets, they integrate trendy accessories relevant to streetwear. Take for example @DachiHype page, the pictures show Dachi rocking Pawkier’s Off-White inspired dog leash or Pawmains streetwear inspired apparel in a few shots, while being surrounded by brands like Supreme or Yeezy. Dachi wears and follows hype pet brands that allow her to showcase her streetwear look.
Next, hypepets create content that remains on message. Some IG pages for pets lack a disciplined look. Some, like @halfbearhalfamazing do an excellent job and staying on message and creating content relevant to hypepet audiences. From the visuals to the captions, the message remains clear and the voice even louder.
Finally, hypepets gain the right followers. Brands pay attention to metrics, but also the audiences following them, and any good influencer understands that gaining the right following proves vital to spreading their clout.
Early Adopters, Big Earners
Content and the number of accounts for hypepets will only continue to expand, and the owners of these accounts will continue to grow their followings, and maybe, their bank accounts. As with any new, emerging market, the earliest adopters are the ones who set the tone and reap the rewards. And as evidence of streetwear’s infiltration proves, the market will only continue to grow, and influencers will keep establishing themselves as gatekeepers to the newest trends, styles and hypepet brands will continue to rise.