In 2023, Which Pets Are Ruling Social Media?
With 430 million social media accounts in North America, pet parents are cashing in on “cute” as they race to achieve that coveted influencer status.
For anyone with a smartphone and an Instagram account, you’ll have noticed the shift in users and in profiles that are now looking a little dogged (pun intended). Yes, our pets have achieved an online presence and for some, it's proven quite lucrative.
In addition to studies that show viewing cute dog videos can decrease anxiety, increase happiness, and improve mental health, it's also an easy way to draw in followers (AKA consumers). I mean what better clickbait than the winsome face of a Yorkie or the comical antics of a kitten? Hmm… that may explain why I’m now following a ferret called Opal.
And when that holy grail of all things “dog” – the American Kennel Association (AKA) - has a section dedicated to how-to-make-your-dog-famous, you know this fun trend is starting to lean toward dare we say, phenomenon status.
So, who does it best? Let’s check out the top dogs (and cats) who scored big in the influential online world for 2023. Note size of "following" does matter.
Pomeranian JiffPom leads the pack with a whopping 20+ million TikTok followers, 9.9 million fans on Instagram plus YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook devotees. Heck, in addition to his TV and movie credits, this 13-year-old Chicago native has even branched out to add merchandise to his repertoire. From his annual wall calendar to a line of JiffPom CuteLife products that can be found on your local Walmart shelves (think tiny plush toys and collectibles that will remind the Gen X crowd of that Beanie Baby frenzy) he’s becoming a marketing maven that’s fetching some pretty big bucks.
Nipping at the heels of JiffPom is Doug the Pug. Now, a dog with that type of mug brings a visual personality that’s instant click-bait for his 3.6 million Instagram followers. But Doug’s success at climbing the social ladder is what makes him such a draw. And he’s not shy about sharing pix of himself in the arms of Beyonce, Demi Lovato, Ed Sheeran, Shakira, or that smooch with Justin Bieber. Let’s not forget his cameo in Katy Perry’s 2017 Swish, Swish video… Like JiffPom, Doug’s social pull has resulted in his own line of merch including T-shirts, backpacks, pencil cases and dog toys.
Chasing that winning vibe has to be Nala Cat with her award-winning 4.4 million Instagram followers. Seriously, this number caused Guinness World Records to rank her as the top cat on Instagram back in 2020. Based in Los Angeles, this rescue feline is also a busy girl on Twitter, Facebook, and even has her own newsletter. But it's when you have your very own cat food brand - carrying your name and image – available on Amazon, that you’ve def made the influencer list.
Think that furry clever clogs you share a sofa with could be the next JiffPom? AKC suggests you start with Instagram, TikTok and YouTube, study the competition and start building your pet’s presence on just one platform before expanding. And yes, the social part of all this means regular, daily posting, so be ready to devote the time needed to manage your pet’s new career while juggling his daily walks and you-time.
Sharing space with three seriously judgy Schnoodles and two felines who prefer to be left alone. #LivingMyBestLife
More by Mary Simpson