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Dog fishing: Are dogs becoming the flirt’s new best friend on dating apps?

Man taking a selfie with golden retriever dog dog-cat-wow

What is Dog fishing?

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A 2.0 flirting technique that persists. When you see a picture of a dog, isn’t this your first reaction: “Oooh so cute!”  Whether you’re a man or woman, anyone can be fooled by the cute face of an adorable dog in a picture. Let’s find out what dog fishing is.

By Emilie Heyl

Published on the 13/01/2020, 11:51, Updated on the 08/02/2021, 13:34

“Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.” - A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare.

At the time of William Shakespeare, Emily Dickinson and Jane Austen, men would devote their love with letters and verses to try and seduce their beloved woman.
And today? Well, you have to swipe right to get a match on Tinder. No need to come up with a beautiful poem, choose a nice picture… and why not with a dog?

What is Dogfishing? 

It’s not about going fishing with a dog, but this is a new flirting trend amongst young people where they upload a picture on dating apps with a dog. Some of them even go further and borrow a dog from a friend just to have that perfect picture. Indeed, according to a study in 2015, 25% of single men on dating sites choose a profile picture with a pet that doesn’t belong to them.

In our digital era, meeting someone takes place online and deciding if you want to swipe left or right will depend on one or a few pictures you have picked. You only have a split of a second to convince someone to swipe right for a yes, therefore the pictures better be good.

Dog = synonym of reliable man (they say) 

According to ABC News, 58% of women would indeed be more attracted to a person who has a pet, because the latter would send back a positive image: maturity, responsibilities, affectionate… Erika Ettin, a dating coach told the Washington Post:

“Sometimes women subconsciously equate things like how a man treats his dog is how he would treat a partner"

But most of the time, the dog doesn’t belong to the person on the picture.

Imagine that: A woman just matched with a man who has a Border Collie posing with him on his profile picture. Bonus: She loves this breed. They start chatting and organise they first date. Guess what, he’s taking her for a walk along the beach and promises to bring his dog. She turns up to their date and notices the man doesn’t have the dog with him, he tells her it’s his mate’s dog… the fish took the bait!

PS: Please remember that animals aren’t objects and it is not fair to take advantage of our four legged friends.