Shay Mitchell’s New BÉIS Pet Carriers Aren’t Just for the Jet Set
“I always felt bad when I saw animals in bags on an airplane because they just didn’t look cozy... I thought, there must be a better way to do this.”
Sign up for The Wildest newsletter for updates
Why are pet carriers so ugly? I mean, really — it’s positively criminal. Luckily, actor Shay Mitchell and her travel line BÉIS are here to make it all better. Their new line of pet carriers and and accessories are attractive, utilitarian, and affordable. “I always felt bad when I saw animals in bags on an airplane because they just didn’t look cozy or like they had enough space,” says Mitchell. “Then I looked at their humans, trying to hold their beloved pet, their bags, their suitcases, their phone — fumbling on the brink of disaster — and I just thought, there must be a better way to do this.”
Mitchell’s solution: a capsule collection that includes a regulation pet carry-on for $168, a sherpa-lined everyday pet tote for $128, and a leash and belt bag for $48. “The regulation pet carry-on is expandable, which gives your fur babies more than enough space to lay down and get comfortable on the plane,” she says. “And for inter-airport movement, the bag can flip on its side [and be worn as a backpack], so your little friend can sit up and you can be hands-free. It also has enough pockets and compartments to meet your, the human’s, needs.”
“I also wanted to have a tote that could accommodate your pet whenever needed, but also be more of an everyday option for you. And, as a little extra nice surprise, this bag has a removable Sherpa pad, so your little pal can exit the bag at your destination but still be cozy and have something familiar,” says Mitchell. As for the leash: “Honestly, this is pretty simple. I wanted to be able to walk my doggo and also have a place for my phone, cards, and poop bags. Ta da! Possibly the best part about this leash, besides the fact that it’s genius, is that the little pouch easily detaches from the leash so you can run into a store with ease to grab whatever essentials you need.”
We also spoke with the BÉIS Pet designer, Elizabeth Money, to get a few more details about the collection.
Why did you and Shay decide to expand BÉIS into the pet space now?
Coming out of the pandemic, we knew that people who have been at home with their pets for two years are likely going to change the way they interact and move around with their furry loved one on a daily and travel basis. Pets are part of our families, especially to these younger generations — we don’t want to leave them at home.
What makes your designs different from other pet carriers on the market?
Most pet products are just thinking about the pet. We’ve taken it a step further and added in features — like our padded laptop sleeve, extra pockets for the owner’s necessities, and our signature key leash — providing something that is useful for both the pet and the pet parent, and giving the latter one less item to carry.
Do you have any pets yourself?
I do! Gatsby, my nine-year-old French Bulldog, has more frequent flyer miles than most people. My experience traveling with him helped me identify major gaps in the market. When Shay says we design things selfishly first, she is not lying. We would never design anything we wouldn’t carry ourselves.
Is Gatsby a good traveler?
Gatsby has become a pro. Having him properly trained has definitely made traveling with him a delight for us and the people around us — they get to see what a good boi he is. However, this has come with challenges, including the time he shut down an entire TSA security line at LAX for stopping and puking in the middle of the metal detector. Let this be a warning: Don’t feed your dog within 12 hours of your flight!
Noted! Any other tips for traveling with your pet?
Regardless of how you are traveling, check with your airline’s, transportation’s, accommodations’, and destination’s pet policies. Make sure to come prepared with the proper documentation for your pet — that has always created a flawless experience for us. You should also prepare your pet: Training and familiarizing them with their carrier and making sure they can answer to all your commands can really relieve any anxiety you or they have around travel. And when you get to where you are going, make sure to give them some time to explore and familiarize themselves with all the newness.
Charles Manning is an actor, writer, and fashion/media consultant living in New York City with his two cats, Pumpkin and Bear. Follow him on Instagram @charlesemanning.