Anyone who’s been around Tinder knows with a cute animal from the photo is generally a large hit.
But what if Tinder profile photographs only featured that adorable animal? And what if, instead of a millennial would-be hooker-upper, it was the cute dog or cat looking for true love?
That is a notion some animal shelters are toying with.
“We are constantly trying to come up with … creative new approaches to get our shelter dogs out in front of possible adopters,” states Karen Hirsch, public relations director at LifeLine Animal Project at Georgia.
And experimentation with internet dating for dogs and cats might just be working.
The unpleasant world of pet adoption is extremely competitive: About 6.5 million dogs and cats enter U.S. shelters each year, each seeking a good forever home. It is too large a need for shelter operators to just sit back and hope they get adopted.
That is why you see cute dogs on display away from the supermarket, partnerships with Uber that will bring puppies right to you for playtime, and aww-inspiring social networking campaigns such as dogs at pajamas.
An estimated 50 million people worldwide use Tinder. So LifeLine and other lands and shelters figure why not give it a shot?
All things considered, people using internet dating programs are already looking for companionship and love — just perhaps a slightly different type.
Hirsch says they recently created profiles for 22 of the dogs and cats.
Animal profiles are also showing up on Bumble, which is home to a different 20 million users or so.
Like sweet Penelope here.
Every pet is assigned to a volunteer who creates the profile and handles the discussions after a match.
“In a crowded shelter, pets often have overlooked, but on a dating program, the animal becomes an individual,” Hirsch says. “People learn about them and form a ‘virtual’ attachment.”
Plus the witty banter is oodles of fun.
For LifeLine, the experimentation is still brand new. But Hirsch says people are responding to it incredibly well so far.
In the minimum, Tinder and Bumble have shown to be great for post menopausal awareness-building on the importance of embracing shelter pets. The critters are getting dozens of matches. Hirsch says there are over a few online adoption inquiries, in addition to individuals coming to the shelter to satisfy their own “match” in person.
She also notes that one of the matches even became a regular volunteer in LifeLine.
This new animal dating idea has another upside for programs — and the people using them, also.
Dating specialists are finding that people are becoming burnt out by internet dating. Between “ghosting,” “cushioning,” “the slow fade,” and a bunch more of these annoying slang terms, humans out there are wondering whether dating programs are even worth the effort.
For intimate love, who knows?
But now that you might just meet with the dog or cat of your dreams, that is not a terrible reason to continue swiping.