Pets With Tattoos? A New (Crazy) Trend

Artist Wim Delvoye tattoos a pig. Image Credit:

I really wish I was joking about this post, but… no. Apparently, a new trend is getting tattoos put on your pets, particularly any pet that is hairless. In Russia, the hairless Sphinx is the most frequent tattoo victim. Yes, I said victim.

I love tattoos. I have a ton of them myself. But I also have the nifty gift of being able to give “informed consent” which, you know, pets can’t do. So I don’t approve.

Also, I have some actual experience tattooing pets. As a vet tech in the 1980s before the microchip was invented for identifying pets, it wasn’t uncommon to tattoo pets with an identification number, often on their inner ear or bellies while they were under anesthesia for another procedure such as spaying or neutering. But we never, ever agreed to put animals under just for a tattoo.

I guess I should be grateful they usually put the animals under, right?

There’s no reason, frankly, to force an animal to undergo lengthy times under anesthesia because of course, the longer they are under the greater the risk just for a cosmetic procedure that the owners like. That includes breed-specific tattooing to address issues with appearance (see slide show below).

In my opinion. What do you say? Would you ink up your pet? Click through for photos.

Note: some of the images may be photoshopped. Very hard to verify.


  • Cosmetic Tattoos 1 of 13
    Cosmetic Tattoos
    This poor Dalmatian dog had a pink nose, which is a failure in the breed standard. So he got his wittle nose tattooed. OUCH.

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  • In the ear tattoos 2 of 13
    In the ear tattoos
    Dogs are often tattooed in their ears, usually with an ID number to help find them if they get lost. But this whole image thing is new.

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  • Sphinx Cat with Ink 3 of 13
    Sphinx Cat with Ink
    By far the most common pet that gets tattooed appears to be the hairless breeds, such as the Sphinx cat pictured here. This could be fake/photoshopped, but it looks pretty much like human tattoos do.

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  • Jack Russel Belly Tattoo 4 of 13
    Jack Russel Belly Tattoo
    So this poor dog got a Hello Kitty tattoo on it's belly. I hope it's a girl. Although the dog probably doesn't care.

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  • Cat immediately post-tattoo 5 of 13
    Cat immediately post-tattoo
    In this photo, the cat is still anesthetized following it's tattoo. I found several shots of this cat being tattooed while under, so I do think it's real. It's a beautiful tattoo. Just wish it was on someone that could give consent.

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  • Chihuahua’s got game… 6 of 13
    Chihuahua's got game...
    It's likely these are fake, but he looks so proud of himself, doesn't he?

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  • Sphinx Tribal Ink 7 of 13
    Sphinx Tribal Ink
    Yes, another hairless Sphinx sporting what looks like real ink. That's a lot of ink for a little cat. I'd say it took 3 hours at least.

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  • Daschund Belly Ink 8 of 13
    Daschund Belly Ink
    This little guy has a tiny tattoo on his belly. Likely done when it was spayed/neutered and didn't take too much time.

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  • Louis Vutton Pigs 9 of 13
    Louis Vutton Pigs
    Apparently, tattooing pigs is a HUGE thing. Seriously, google it. Scary.

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  • Small Tribal on a Sphinx 10 of 13
    Small Tribal on a Sphinx
    This cat definitely has the attitude of someone with a tattoo, yes?

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  • It’s Bad Enough Being A Hairless Chihuahua 11 of 13
    It's Bad Enough Being A Hairless Chihuahua
    ...without getting demon batwings tattooed on your sides. Sad!

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  • Tattooed Pigs 12 of 13
    Tattooed Pigs
    I think they might be in a bike gang.

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  • Body Modified Dog 13 of 13
    Body Modified Dog
    Thank GOD this one is totally photoshopped. I hope.

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Article Posted 4 years Ago

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