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'Menswear Dog' blog turns Shiba Inu into viral style icon

Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:04 PM ET

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Menswear Dog: The most stylish Shiba Inu in New York City.

The latest New Yorker to make a splash on the style scene is (drumroll please) ... a Shiba Inu.

The dapper dog is taking the Internet by storm this week, thanks to a snazzy new Tumblr called Menswear Dog, which features the pet in a variety of preppy (human) outfits, from blazers and ties to cardigans and collared shirts.

"Honestly, Menswear Dog was a result of idle hands, a lazy Saturday afternoon, and having a whimsically handsome Shiba," the dog's owner and blog co-creator Dave Fung told TODAY.com of the week-old project. "We originally did it as a joke and posted a photo to Facebook for laughs, but quickly realized that we may have stumbled onto something strangely absurd and special."

So far the dog, whose real name is Bodhi (named after Patrick Swayze's character in "Point Break") is donning Fung's clothes, but he may soon develop his own style — inspired by Ryan Gosling, among others.

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The blog was created on Saturday, and has already become an online sensation.

"Menswear Dog's style motto is to 'do you,'" Fung said of the secrets to the dog's fashion choices. "If you feel stupid, you're going to look stupid... It also helps to be a Shiba Inu, because that automatically makes you 50 percent more dapper."

Fung created the blog with 26-year-old womenswear designer Yena Kim, but they're happy to cede the spotlight to their pet. "Too often, fashion blogging is a vanity game and we don't want this to be about us," Fung said. "It's a dog wearing fly clothes. End of story."

And so far, Fung says the viral fame around the blog hasn't gone to Bodhi's head. "He's always been a bit of a diva, so nothing's really changed."

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The Menswear Dog is sporting a lot of layers right now, but come summer he will shift to accessories.

While the blog only features four looks so far, the overwhelming response has encouraged Fung and Kim to continue the project, which they say is far less less glamorous than it looks.

"It doesn't take very long to shoot a look but the behind-the-scenes is awkward at best," Fung said. "There are a lot of limbs flying around and propping him up with all sorts of clips in the back of his clothes, but amid all the shuffling, you get this window of magic."

Bodhi is bundled up for now, but come summertime fans can expect to seem him sporting some more accessories and "streetwear swag."

"First and foremost, the goal of this — and always has been — is to make people smile," Fung said. "Outside of that, if Menswear Dog starts to become a voice within the fashion community, all the better. As long as people still like what we're doing and keep supporting this absurd site, we'll keep posting."

And dog lovers can rest assured that the Shiba is enjoying his style adventures. "He loves the attention," Fung said, "and the treats."

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