By Tom Heaton For Daily Mail Australia
07:22 02 Aug 2022, updated 07:39 02 Aug 2022
- Alina Michaels, 32, from Sydney’s Northern Beaches, treats her dog like a queen
- Ms Michaels said she has spent more than $150k on her dog Coco the Peekapoo
- Coco’s Instagram page @coco_the_peekapoo has more than 62,000 followers
- Ms Michaels spends up to $8,000 per year on Coco’s birthday parties
- Sponsors also contribute up to $15,000 worth of products for the quests
- Ms Michaels said that organising Coco’s Instagram page is ‘like a full-time job’
- Alina’s story will air on SBS Insight tonight at 8.30pm AEST
An Australian woman has revealed the enormous cost of maintaining her dog’s social media fame.
Alina Michaels, 32, who lives in Sydney’s Northern Beaches, has lavished her love and attention on Coco the ‘peekapoo’ – a breed that is three quarters toy poodle and a quarter Pekingese – to make up for not having any children.
Ms Michaels told Daily Mail Australia on Tuesday that she has spent more than $150,000 on Coco since establishing her own Instagram page four and a half years ago.
That includes a wardrobe worth more than $100,000, as well as a $500 remote control pink Lamborghini which she loves to ride around in.
Ms Michaels got the idea of making Coco a canine influencer after she ‘noticed a friend dress her dog up with fancy clothes and then post photos on social media.’
Since creating her dog’s Instagram page @coco_the_peekapoo a few years ago, it has gained more than 62,000 followers who ‘cannot wait to see what Coco wears next.’
The page is a money spinner, as many of Coco’s devoted followers purchase the products that she poses in.
Ms Michaels said organising Coco’s Instagram page is ‘like a full-time job.’
Coco was crowned Australia’s Top Dog in 2021, Sydney’s Top Dog in 2019 and has had several television appearances, including ‘Pooch Perfect’ with Rebel Wilson, Studio 10, Sunrise and The Morning Show.
She models for DOGUE’s range of clothes and accessories, Indie Boho and Bravecto,
As a result of her social media fame, Coco often gets spotted by fans while out and about.
‘I don’t think she really has any idea what is going on,’ Ms Michaels expressed.
‘Coco likes to wear all sorts of clothing and gets excited when she put the outfits on…she knows she will get photos or leave the house.’
Ms Michaels revealed that she spends up to $8,000 on Coco’s birthday party each year, while sponsors also provide up to $15,000 worth of products for the influencers and party guests to take home.
The budget for Coco’s 8th birthday party in two weeks’ time is $4,000.
Every post on Coco’s Instagram page generates up to $750 through brand partnerships and Ms Michaels said this money more than offsets the spending on these expensive birthday parties.
‘For anyone wanting to be successful, it’s important to have relationships with brands and businesses…opportunities will arise from this,’ Ms Michaels said.
‘We have met so many nice people along the way through networking.’
While majority of Coco’s followers share positive comments, there are also jealous dog mothers out there who are not so impressed.
Ms Michaels said: ‘The growing world of pet influencers can be very competitive, like a pack of school mums.’
Alina’s story will air on SBS Insight tonight at 8.30pm AEST.