Who wouldn’t stop, just for a minute or two, and read on when seeing a come-on like that in their Facebook news feed, especially when it’s placed next to a beautiful photo of a seemingly medium-sized dog sitting on the grass on a sunny day? A phrase like that is practically a dare to people scrolling through the maze of posts that erupted in their profile since the last time they checked.
You only think you have a great pet/friend/spouse. You haven’t experienced anything like this little dude.
Adoption pleas like that (and as much as I’d love to give credit where credit is due, I did not bookmark the post, so I cannot tell you the shelter/rescue group responsible for such creativity) warm my soul. They make me want to read more about the pet and what makes them so special in the eyes of the people currently caring for him or her. Wouldn’t you want to know more?
Shoot, I’d go out of my way to look for more posts like that. Posts that showcase everything wonderful a new four-legged friend can add to your life. Heck, I’d even be willing to forward those types of come-ons to other folks I know, unlike the posts that still make up the majority of what I still see online: URGENT!!! WILL DIE TOMORROW! DESPERATELY NEED HELP!! PLEASE SAVE!! Those are posts that I’m almost certain to never finish reading, let alone pass on.
Because the odds are pretty good that if you are reading this, you are someone who has a soft spot for animals, particularly companion animals, because if you’re not, the only other option is that you lost a bet to me and reading this is in lieu of me ever getting my money from you. Mostly, I’m guessing it’s the former.
Same goes for my Facebook friends. Like you, the people I’m friends with on Facebook are people I made an active choice to include in my circle. As such, it’s a pretty safe assumption that I’m not carrying a host of backyard breeding, puppy-torturing, kitten-hating folks on my roster --- and I’m guessing you aren’t, either.
So, while I have absolutely no objection at all to people who forward pet information in an effort to find a forever home for any pet they can, I’m well-past over the not-so-subtle implication that it’s all my fault if the six dogs you just posted, one after another, aren’t all rescued and in a foster home by the end of the day. Especially in a forum like Facebook where the people who are joining your organization’s page or adding you to their “friend” list have clearly already had a whole pitcher of Kool-Aid and are asking for another glass. We get it. We want to help, or are already actively helping in whatever way we are able. So how about dialing the combo-meal-sized dose of guilt back a bit?
Tell me what is wonderful and special about the pet in the photo. Tell me about a physical mark of beauty, an endearing habit or a funny quirk. Use a line from a movie or a song that will encourage me to read more, share more, do more, because it feels good to do so.
It’s what friends do for each other.