Whole Dog Journal's Blog June 14, 2013

Falling in Love With a Dog, Online

Posted at 02:56PM - Comments: (21)

So, one of my friends saw that I “liked” the photos that my former sister-in-law (now divorced) posted of a litter of puppies. My FSIL has a darling Border Collie female, whom she bred to a handsome BC, planning to keep one pup as a companion to the mama dog and sell the rest. My FSIL “tagged” me in the photos, because she remembered my Border Collie Rupert (who died in 2001) and thought maybe I’d be interested in one.

I’m not, because of my raging love affair with my mixed-breed, Otto, but my Facebook friend was riveted by one of the five pups in the photos. Why that one? I couldn’t keep them straight myself – they were a churning mix of black and white and I honestly couldn’t tell which was which from photo to photo.

My friend is not currently looking for a new dog – just open to one. She lost her heart dog to cancer last year and has another one fighting the damn disease now. A part of her would probably like the sparkle and fun and distraction of a puppy – but apparently, just the right puppy.  She’s been lurking and spying on the regular flow of photos from my FSIL, and had her eyes on one pup in particular. And she finally got up the courage to ask if that one had been spoken for. She intimated that if it wasn’t, she’d be in the market.

I felt a bit like a marriage broker, but passed the question along to my FSIL . . . who responded that the puppy in question was indeed sold and going to her new home any day now.

And despite her slow and irrational fall into love with the pup, once she knew the puppy was spoken for, my friend quickly and rationally fell out of love with the idea of getting a pup any time soon. Snap. Just like that!

I had been thinking that my friend was just jonesing for a pup, any pup. But no; there was something about that one little face that riveted her.

It made me think back to when my husband finally agreed that we were ready for another dog, some years after Rupert passed away. I immediately pulled up the website of my local shelter, which had about 30 dogs available for adoption at that moment. I singled out two that I wanted to go meet: one scruffy terrier-mix, and a one lanky hound-mix. As those two disparate dogs showed, I didn’t have a specific breed or size or type in mind. I just liked the looks of those two guys. And when I met the scruffy adolescent, I knew I had to have him. That was Otto.

Have you ever fallen in love with a dog just from his or her photo? If so, share your story. We’d love to hear it.

Comments (20)

oops way too many typos on my comment :) I was in a hurry to type it and in low light.

Posted by: Nikki M | June 20, 2013 8:57 AM    Report this comment

I am a rescue and get many emails daily about the dire needs of dogs in shelters. I saw one little dogs photo and I knew that she would easily get adopted or pulled from the shelter by a rescue, so I dismissed it. And indeed it turned out a rescue had a hold on her. However, I could not keep my mind of her so I drove over hourto the shelter to just look, lol. I took one look at her in person and that was it, she was mine. She wont be adopted out from our rescue most like, she is my dog. She sleeps with me each nigt, cant keep her out, she climbs the baby gate to my loft bedroom. She is only 6 pounds and is part chihuahua I think and for sure chinese crested.

Posted by: Nikki M | June 20, 2013 8:55 AM    Report this comment

I have never fallen in love with a dog online because almost all my dogs I met at the shelter where I volunteered, but when that shelter closed I blogged about choosing the right rescue. One of the dogs I posted a picture of was with the rescue I ended up with. The first dog I ended up fostering for them? The dog I had posted on my blog. She's still here. I adopted her. :)

Posted by: Melfr | June 19, 2013 9:33 PM    Report this comment

Yes. I call her my soul mate. Her name is Bella. I was not really looking for a dog, but was looking at photos of dogs at my "then" local shelter. I was drawn to a sweet photo of a yellow lab, 3 months old. There was just something in her eyes that pulled at my heart like a huge rubber band, but i did nothing. 3 months later, i looked again, and there she was...still. I was driving to an errand, and passed the shelter on the way. I immediately thought, "i will stop on the way back, and see if Bella is still there." I did, and she was. I just knew she would be going home with me. She was 6 months old now. She walked into my home, and quickly took to the couch for a long nap. She never went potty, EVER, not to this day in my home! She is the joy of my life. One month after i got her, my physician told me that my cholesterol was borderline high, and i needed to walk and watch my diet to avoid having to go on meds. I told her that i had just adopted a lab puppy, so the walking part would be easy. She told me that was Bella and I were meant for each other, as now i had a walking buddy. She really did rescue me, instead of the other way around. She is 3.5 years old now. Still to this day, every time i look into her eyes, i feel the same rubber band effect on my heart, and love for my soul mate.

Posted by: JMHastey | June 19, 2013 8:01 AM    Report this comment

I had to put my 10 yr old lab/shepherd mix down, due to cancer, and 1 month later I was looking on Animal Aid's website. Up popped a pic of a 4 month old black lab mix. He happened to be boarded at my vet's - several vets rotate weekend call. I felt like this dog had my name on him, that it was meant to be. He has been with me since and is now 7. He is such a love. I wouldfn't trade him for anything.

Posted by: lora j | June 18, 2013 8:53 PM    Report this comment

No, but I have had a foster dog adopted by a family who drove 12 hrs to pick her up when they found out she would be going to a mobile adoption in a few days. They simply fell in love with her "Otto-like" terrier face on Petfinder. That said, I did go down to the local shelter 8 years ago to adopt an older calm dog who could stay outside during the day, yada-yada-yada. Went home with a 5 lb, eight week old puppy. Love at first sight...

Posted by: MadderScientist | June 18, 2013 7:22 PM    Report this comment

My Boomer (Australian Cattle Dog) that I adopted from Arizona Cattle Dog Rescue last New Years a year ago won our hearts on their adoption page. We drove for 10 hrs to get him. This Christmas we saw a picture of another dog they had up for adoption, (Virginia Woof, now Lexie), a female Australian Cattle Dog/Border Collie (mostly BC) and when I saw her, that was it! Drove another big trip to pick her up! They are best friends and love all our (4) indoor kitties. Rescues are SO great!

Posted by: Nancy B | June 18, 2013 5:19 PM    Report this comment

Oh, YES, I did fall in love with all 3 of my dogs on-line...in case that wasn't obvious from my post. ;-)

Posted by: rsqdogsmom | June 18, 2013 3:32 PM    Report this comment

All 3 of my current dogs were found on PetFinder. My oldest, Cole has the most unusual brindle-striped fur with white feet.I was told that he had been in the shelter for 6 months and that not one single person had looked at him or asked about him because he was 'just another Big-Black-Dog'! He wasn't even black! He has been the best dog and people often ask about his breed. After much searching I have determined that he is a Mountain Cur Mix and quite beautiful for 'just another BBD'!
My girl, Maddie is an ACD/Pittie mix, with one blue & one brown eye. She looked like a little stuffed toy on PetFinder at 10 months old. I couldn't believe that no one had taken her. Now 7 years old, she is such a GIRL, and quite the social butterfly. She loves ALL dogs of all sizes and she makes dog-friends everywhere she goes. Many dogs in my neighborhood wait for her to come by on her daily walk to come out to play with her!My youngest, Wishbone, had to have come from an abusive situation. I have had him 3 years and he's afraid of EVERYTHING & almost everyone except our family. It is so sad to watch him shaking when he is presented with new situations but, as bad as he is now, he was 300% worse when I got him.I seriously thought about returning him to the rescue group when I realized how many problems he had, but my brother reminded me that if I took him back maybe no one ELSE would ever be as patient with him as we were.
He loves Maddie and she bonded with him immediately. He's very lovely; he isn't destructive or mean and he came housetrained; but he barks a lot out of fear and we can't always pet him when we'd like to. Hey, no dog is perfect. ;-) My hope is that someday I will be able to trim his nails at home without a muzzle, a calming cap and 3 other people to hold him! It's something to work towards.

Posted by: rsqdogsmom | June 18, 2013 3:28 PM    Report this comment

Yes, I feel in love with my little Yorkie from her photo and some videos. I got her from a woman in upper state New York. Yorkie puppies kind of all look the same but Beanie's face was a little imperfect. One of her eyes looked a little bigger than the other and she just wasn't as perfect looking as the other doggie in the picture. I saw her and KNEW she was my dog. I have had her for about a year and a half now and she is the love of my life. She makes me laugh and brings me joy every single day, and I miss her terribly when I have to leave her alone.

Posted by: Sportschick | June 18, 2013 3:18 PM    Report this comment

Yes I do fall in love with our foster dogs from the pictures that our group's puppy whisperer's husband takes of the dogs she pulls from the shelter. She quarantines them until after their first vax and so by the time the foster moms get them we are ready to love them. My husband makes videos of our foster pups/dogs and we put them on the group website. Prospective adopters get really excited about the dog and we have a video to look at after the adoption goes through.

Posted by: Olivia | June 18, 2013 2:42 PM    Report this comment

Yep, I have. All the time. I never keep them -- I always just pull them as foster dogs -- but a picture of a shelter dog with soft eyes, an approachable body posture, and a certain inquisitive tilt to the head always gets me. Everything else can change; size, coat type, breed mix, and gender can vary. But the soft eyes and yearning for human companionship come through the photos.

Those are the dogs I pull. They always get placed quickly, because they always grab someone else through even more adorable pictures once they're out of the shelter. Someone else sees them, and falls in love.

And in over a dozen placements that happened in that specific way, I've not yet had one go bad, and I've never had one of those dogs turn out to be anything less than a stellar companion. Guess there's something to be said for falling in love online. :)

Posted by: Jennifer A | June 18, 2013 1:14 PM    Report this comment

Twelve years ago I spied a recently captured, semi-feral 18 month old terrier/chow/shepherd mix on Petshelter.org (the precursor of Petfinder). A voice in my head said "that's him!" He was an adorable "Chewbaca" of a scruffy dog. My husband asked "why him?" I had no idea, other than I loved him already.

I drove two states away in blistering heat to meet him and bring him home. It took him a year to relax enough to wag his tail. Endless classes and hours of work for me to learn how to desensitize and re-condition him to live in a civilized, family environment. He challenged me with his lack of socialization and his fear and there were times I was so close to giving up.

By the age of three he had his Canine Good Citizen card. At one time I had thought that would be the biggest accomplishment we could achieve, and was our lofty goal. But by five he was a certified Therapy dog and working in a schools-based anti-violence program with teens, as well as with preschoolers in a Reading with Rover program. He had transformed into the most gentle, sweet, tolerant dog I could imagine.

Today my Ailbe is 13 and patiently training my new lab/aussie pup in his wisdom. I knew I wanted his mark on my next dog, and with his consent we are spending this summer together raising my next heart dog. Every moment is precious with those whom we fall in love with at first sight.

Posted by: Lisa V | June 18, 2013 1:12 PM    Report this comment

I fell in love with our current border collie, Emmy, from a picture on the website of Glen Highland Farm in Morris, N.Y.
We had lost our previous 15 year old border Collie, Meg, about six months before. I wasn't sure we were ready for another dog - especially another black & white border collie - but there was just something about this sparky little girl! We made a trip to the farm to meet her and everything just "clicked". She was 4 years old at the time - had been in two homes - and was quite the behaviour challenge. She'll be 10 in October and we love her so much - can't quite imagine life without a border collie!

Posted by: slefroy | June 18, 2013 12:10 PM    Report this comment

Absolutely fell in love with my current girl from a picture. She was found tied to a tree in the city and was taken to the city pound. I saw her picture on the website for CACC and offered to foster her, knowing that face may soon become a member of our family. (Our golden had to be put to sleep a month prior due to kidney failure.). We brought her home and within two weeks we adopted her.

Posted by: Michelle M | June 18, 2013 11:43 AM    Report this comment

That's how I got my 2nd dog, a mini Aussie. I had been thinking about getting a 2nd dog for awhile and had looked through available rescues but then thought to search the breeders as well. There he was! A cute blue merle mini Australian Shepherd,pictured outside on grass with some clover in his mouth. It was definitely love at first sight. I was able to purchase him from the breeder, who lived in Wisconsin (I lived in Massachusetts at the time). The pup had to endure a lengthy plane ride to arrive in MA. He turned out to be allergic to chicken and have a very sensitive stomach, so I'm not sure I would recommend anyone else get a puppy shown with clover in his mouth... But he has turned out to be a WONDERFUL dog, so I'm very happy.

Posted by: margeam | June 18, 2013 11:38 AM    Report this comment

We adopted Mocha from Critter Calvary in TN in Oct. 2011 after seeing a picture of a 11 week old Husky/Australian Shepard (or Border Collie) mix. Her ears were standing straight up and her one blue and one green eye were stunning.She is chocolate brown with white in her neck and has white (French Manicured) toes. I wish I could post her picture here. You would see why we fell in love with her. We had lost our 14 year old husky and 14 year old Lab/Australian Mix some months before and knew we could not live without another family member. Mocha has been a blessing although she is a bit headstrong. She has had to have a lot of training but we wouldn't trade her for any other dog. :-)

Posted by: ROSALIE J | June 18, 2013 10:57 AM    Report this comment

Even though I'm not looking for another dog (I currently have three), I do fall in love with dogs on Facebook all the time. We are "friends" through their human parents, and these dogs are so cute, I can't help but love them. Many of them are rescued dogs who have physical problems due to neglect or abuse, which makes me love them even more. My heart goes out to them, and in a sense, they become part of my family. I've cried for the ones who pass away and "go over the Rainbow Bridge" just as if they were my own doggies. Yes, I definitely fall in love with dogs just through their photos.

Posted by: DeborahH | June 18, 2013 10:54 AM    Report this comment

I am a volunteer with Basenji Rescue And Transport; have been since 2006. A local shelter contacted the organization becuase a 6 month female had been surrendered and she failed their temperament test. I hadn't seen a picture of her and my intention was to foster her and get her placed. Well, when I went to pick her up at the shelter and a staff member brought her out, it was love at first sight! I could not bear to part with her, so I adopted her! Dixie is my little "BRAT Ambassador". She accompanies me on most home visits.

Posted by: Roberta L K | June 18, 2013 10:53 AM    Report this comment

We recently lost our black & tan mini Doxie. I found another one at the Spalding County shelter here in GA & fell in love. Sadly, he was one of the last chance doggies and after seeing him on Facebook, several people were interested in adopting him.
I was not the lucky one to get this cute little guy but at least he found a good home.

Posted by: Joanna C | June 18, 2013 10:43 AM    Report this comment

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