London: Veterinary doctors have claimed that carrying a dog in a handbag could leave the pet bald and stressed.

Dogs have become a must-have fashion accessory for those wanting to follow socialites, such as Paris Hilton.

However, vets have warned pet-owners to look after their dogs properly or they could end up losing their hair.

A three-year-old Chihuahua was rescued by the Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary, in Edenfield when it developed a skin disorder after being kept in a handbag.

"Camilla has been a designer pet and carried around in a handbag like you often see stars such as Paris Hilton doing," a daily quoted manager Nail Martin as saying.

"Camilla is suffering from some sort of allergy which is causing her to lose her fur but we will get to the bottom of it and fix it," he added.

He also warned dog owners not to follow the celebrity craze, as it would cost them thousands of pounds for treatment.