The dating scene nowadays is intimidating, stressful and — to my mind — far more trouble than it’s worth.
You have a slew of new terminology to tackle, such as “ghosting,” “breadcrumbing,” “stashing” and “benching.” (What do those even mean?) And there’s also that lame 3-day rule, in which you don’t call your date for 3 days, even if you both had a great time. (Why exactly is that, again?)
Women and men everywhere are fed up with the whole insincere idea of today’s dating world, and we’ve got our walls built up high. Scaling down our defenses is no easy task, but some of us do have a weakness: your dog.
So here are some ways your canine buddy can help you win the day — and possibly win someone’s heart.
1. “Accidental” Encounter
If you see someone you’d like to get to know better and they happen to be walking a dog, this might be your chance to try the old “accidental” encounter trope. You know, the one where you happen to be walking your dog at the same time your love interest is walking their dog.
Coincidentally, you accidentally encounter them every day at the same time. This makes the conversational lead-in easy — start with your dogs:
- “What breed is that?”
- “What is their name?”
- “They are so cute/so spirited/such a good dog!” (Or insert your own compliment.)
You can build on this information every time you see that special someone out with their dog with more conversations. Just make sure you’ve met each other enough times or you feel a mutual connection so asking them out isn’t too weird — because, c’mon, it’s always weird, no matter who’s asking.
2. Dog Playdate
Beyond being your best buddy, your dog may be your best wing-canine at a playdate or party. Lots of people have parties for their pets or pet-friendly parties.
If you’re already acquainted with your love interest, maybe you can spend a little time together while your dogs frolic at one of these shindigs.
Note that your dog should be well-behaved. If your dog is tearing through the play area, creating mayhem and leaving destruction, that isn’t the best impression to make. Some early training and socializing in your pup’s life will help conquer those destructive quirks.
3. At the Vet
Few dogs actually like going to the vet. If you happen to run into your love interest at the veterinarian’s office, though, the upside is you can sit together, swap stories and help console or control their dog.
Before you bring up anything remotely romantic, though, be sure their dog is not in the vet’s office for something major, like a major illness. That would be terrible timing on your part.
4. Treat Your Dog Well
Even if your love interest doesn’t have a dog, they may take note of how you treat your dog — especially if it’s a woman.
According to a 2015 study, women were more than twice as likely to be attracted to someone because of a pet and twice as likely to judge the object of their interest based on how they treated their pet.
You could be super smooth with your love interest, but if you’re yelling at or ignoring your dog, you could be off their radar for good. So before you try to start a new relationship with another human, check your relationship with your dog — and treat them like the amazing best friend they are.
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5. Visit the Park
Your local dog park might just be the perfect place to meet your fellow dog lover. After all, everyone in there is likely to be a dog’s human.
It might sound farther-fetched than Fluffernutter’s tennis ball, but an AKC survey found that “When it comes to meeting women, 58% of men said a puppy is a foolproof babe-magnet in the park (only 25% said a baby is better). Forty-six percent of women said they’d stop and talk to anyone with a cute puppy.”
So why not take your daily stroll down at the dog park? Who knows what you’ll find?
3 Doggie Dating Don’ts
Although it seems like common sense, it’s wise to set a few “don’ts” when it comes to dating:
- Don’t borrow someone else’s dog to capture the interest of another human.
- Don’t escalate “accidental” meetings into stalking. This is a big one, so check yourself. For example, a street encounter every few days is normal — walking by their house at midnight every night is decidedly not. Instead of getting a date with your love interest, you’ll likely get a visit from your local police department instead, so keep it chill.
- Don’t pretend to like dogs just to get a date — begging is discouraged in both canines and humans.
If you’ve got your eye on a fellow dog lover, go for a walk with your pooch and see what happens. At worst, nothing — and the best part of that is you’ll still have your best canine buddy to spend time with.