PetSmart has become the latest company to face criticism from consumers over its promotion of LGBTQ merchandise after it unveiled a collection of Pride-themed clothing for pets just ahead of June’s Pride Month, the New York Post reported on Tuesday.
The collection includes items such as dog bikinis, butterfly cat leashes and reptile cape costumes in rainbow colors.
“I suppose it could’ve been worse,” said national radio host Todd Starnes. “At least PetSmart isn’t selling butless leather chaps for your pussy cat.”
Some online critics have urged a boycott of PetSmart similar to ones against Bud Light, Kohl’s and Target for using LGBTQ themes to promote their products.
“I’m not sure the average American understands the intent of radical hate groups like the Human Rights Campaign,” Starnes said. “They want to every man, woman, child and pooch to bow down to their perverse sexual agenda.”
The anger of consumer comes despite this being the fourth consecutive year that PetSmart has promoted Pride-related merchandise, with the previous years generating no such backlash.
In a release earlier this month, PetSmart’s senior vice president and chief merchandising officer Kristin Shane said the company is “proud to elevate the voices and experiences of the LGBTQ+ community,” the Daily Mail reported.
Shane emphasized in the release that the new collection “was initiated and inspired by our associate resource group team members to help pet parents and their pets celebrate the spirit of Pride and share our values of inclusion and unconditional love.”
The boycott threats against PetSmart come after Target lost more than $10 billion in market capitalization in just 10 days connected to consumer anger over its Pride-themed merchandise.
The stock of Kohl’s department store has also dropped following a social media blitz urging a boycott due to its Pride Month merchandise, The Wall Street Journal reported.
There also continues to be ongoing backlash to Bud Light after it used trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney to promote the beer.
With reporting from our news partner Newsmax.