FROM Michelin-starred dog food and country retreats to million-pound collars and mink coats, pet owners in Scotland are taking pampering to a whole new level.

Last week celebrity chef Albert Roux unveiled a new dining experience for canine companions of guests at Andy Murray’s Cromlix House and other Inverlochy Castle hotels.

Launched last week in honour of National Pet Month, Roux insists his chocolate Labrador, Canelou, likes “everything on the menu”, whether it be the “chicken, liver, beef and bean meatloaf with chicken jelly” or the “salmon, mackerel, spinach and brown rice risotto”.

The Michelin-starred chef is not alone in creating menus for pets. The Four Seasons Hotel at St Fillans in Perthshire has long been turning out plates for four-legged guests.

And this expanding luxury market in pet pampering limited to food. For the devoted dog or cat owner there are also spa sessions, canine and feline fashions, pet retreats, alternative therapies, cat therapy, grooming parlours, animal fancy dress, doggy daycare, doga (dog yoga), dog beer, pet photo shoots, pet weddings and other indulgences. Hollywood-style pampering for cats and dogs has come to Scotland.

The trend was set to take off once the first luxury dog hotel, House of Hugo in Brighton, was the star of Channel 4 documentary in 2014. Hot on its heels, last year, the Aitken family set up the Bellslea Hills Pet Hotel and Spa in Ayr, offering kennel boarding. Owner Will Aitken notes that it’s not as over-the-top as many Hollywood offerings: “Some of those places are pretty extravagant. A four-storey building with proper bedrooms for the dogs. Lamborghinis which will come and pick up your dog and deliver them to the hotel. We’re not quite there yet.”

Nowadays for every luxury consumer experience you might wish for yourself, there is almost always an equivalent for your dog. Book your furry friend into a pet retreat and it is promised they will have a “holiday of their own”. Fancy a little spa session? Why not treat them to one too? Ogling that bomber jacket? Might as well get one for Fido as well.

Meanwhile, pets are frequently talked of as if they were family members, children or even babies. As animal behaviourist Dr Roger Mugford puts it: “We now talk about pet parenting. We project family values on to pets. People talk about pet rights not in an animal welfare way, but the rights of an animal to be participating in family events. We are really treating pets as people.”

He believes a number of sociological changes have caused this. “The decrease in family size is one thing. There is also the instability of human-to-human relationships, so people are looking for more reliable relationships. A relationship with a pet, especially with a dog is considered a more unconditional relationship than one either with a child or partner.”

Julia Ashton, who runs a “pet retreat”, Bed and Biscuits, nestled in a 3,000 acre estate near Kilmarnock, notes: “The general public do love their dogs. Many worry more about them than they do their children.” Ashton is also the proud owner of a family of pugs, including Crufts best of breed winner, Mr Darcy. “I do tend,” she says, “to have clients that are as worried about their dog as they would be about their children. It’s their baby. And rightly so.”

Bed and Biscuits markets itself as providing the dogs “a wonderful fulfilling holiday all of their own”. Among the luxury details are chandeliers in the kennels, underfloor heating, music and widescreen televisions where the dogs, on bad weather days, can be entertained – a movie favourite being Minions. Anxious owners can also check up on their dogs from afar while at the hotel bar or by the swimming pool via their webcam service.

Would she consider ordering from the dog menu at a hotel? Ashton is unsure. Normally, she says, she takes her own food. “I’m particular about what my dogs have. I used to feed them an expensive brand of dog food, but then I started looking into what the ingredients were.” Now, she says, she has switched her pugs to a holistic diet. “Meat and fish, fruit, vegetables and herbs that are available seasonally,” she says.

Ashton admits she does occasionally “spoil” her own dogs. Recently, she notes, they celebrated the birthday of one of their pugs by taking him along to Pets at Home and splurging £120 on him. “We got him a new bed. Does he need one? No, he sleeps on my bed. We got him loads of toys, a straw hat for his daughter. It’s the doggy’s birthday, isn’t it? It’s what you do when you love your pets, isn’t it? Do they appreciate it? No probably not. Am I half crazy, yes possibly. But that’s what you do, isn’t it?”

Spoiling is a word that comes up frequently, begging the question who exactly is being spoiled? The owner or the pet? Meanwhile, the animals are frequently anthropomorphised and endowed with consumer personalities. Will Aitken, who runs Bellslea Hill Pet Hotel and Spa, has a French bulldog called Faith. “Maybe I’ve spoiled her a bit too much,” he says. “We have a designer boutique so we get some bits and pieces in – and she’s kitted out with them. She’s got bandanas, she’s got hoodies, bomber jackets. You name it. The staff all call her Princes Faith. She runs about the place knowing that she owns it.”

But Dr Roger Mugford points out that we shouldn’t worry for these incredibly indulged pets. “My experience is that the most indulged cats and dogs cope with that remarkably well. They do not become neurotic, weird animals. They deal with their over-indulgent and over-dependent owners rather well.”

Financing fido: the best that money can buy

According to the People's Dispensary Sick Animals, the lifetime cost of owning a cat is estimated to be around £17,000, while a dog can cost between £16,000 and £31,000. But, if you really want to splash out, you can spend much more. Here are a few of the extras you can get, from cradle to grave.

Pet transport: A quality doggy buggy or cat stroller will set you back almost £200, or you can carry your dog, handbag style in a Sommeil et Voyage dog carrier bag for £175

Fitness: A doggy treadmill can cost anything from £500 to £1,000. Too many gourmet meals and you may be needing to take your dog to Doggy Fat Camp, at £25 a day. Swimming lessons are around £20 per session.

Furnishing: How about the Louis XV Pet Pavilion, at a mere £17,000, or the Hello Kitty Crystal Dog House, at over £20,000?

Property: Some dogs deserve their own architect-designed house, like the £250,000 building one dog owner in Gloucestershire erected for his two Great Danes, complete with plasma TV.

Accessories and clothing: Dugz an online Edinburgh-based store says their kilts, around £30, are their big sellers. Or you can snap up a Hartman and Rose’s Mink Fur Coat for dogs for £500. Meanwhile, the most expensive dog collar in the world is said to be the Amour Amour Dog Collar at £1.2 million

Weddings and funerals: Two Essex owners spent £20,000 on a wedding for their dogs, Lola and Mugly, in 2011. The UK pet cremation industry is now worth over £100 million a year. You can get your pets ashes turned into a diamond for anything from £2000 to £10,000.

Total cost: approx £1.5 million