by Lauren O'Neil
Posted: April 8, 2013 11:18 PM Last Updated: April 8, 2013 11:29 PM
There's much to love about Chinese Internet memes -- especially those involving pictures of cute animals doing funny things -- but a new photo fad called Gou gou chuan siwa (in English, "Dogs wearing pantyhose") has many divided this week over the ethics of putting hosiery on housepets.
Who would have thought that pups in pantyhose could prove so polarizing?
The trend is said to have originated with a single image posted to the massive Chinese social network Weibo by a user called Ulatang on April 2nd.
Knowyourmeme.com reports that by April 5th, Ulatang’s photo had received over 16 000 comments and was inspiring plenty of copycats within Weibo.
Citing Hong Kong News site Sharp Daily, Kotaku's Brian Ashcraft wrote that "bored" users had been uploading the photos alongside jokes about how "sexy" the dogs look.
"These poor dogs! Seriously! While this does seem slightly mean (it really does), I guess it's no meaner than people dressing their pets up in outfits—or making them cosplay." he wrote. "Now, whether or not this is more humiliating, that's another matter altogether."
As news and photos of the trend spread through English blogs, more copycat photos appeared on Twitter and Instagram.