A dog is for life, not just for likes.
It’s a variation on the nearly-40-year-old slogan that’s impressed on us every Advent by the people at the Dogs Trust. But now it is becoming ever-more pressing as research conducted by the Blue Cross–another animal charity–suggests that there’s a chunk of people who would predicate their choice of dog or cat on the number of social media likes it is expected to garner.
Just let that sink in for a minute. One-in-seven of the 1,000 people questioned in the survey (carried out on behalf of the Blue Cross by OnePoll*) said that they would choose a specific breed of dog or cat based on an assumed arbitrary approval rating casually meted out by a gaggle of people, most of whom are likely strangers.
That’s not the pet which, practically, best suits your living circumstances, activity levels, or family circumstances, or the pet that, emotionally, you are going to let into your home and your heart and will love you unconditionally in return, but the one whose photos are going to prove most popular on social media.