A Dog’s Not Just For Instagram!

A dog is for life, not just for Instagram, a statement that I feel needs to be heard more at this time of year than any other.

Dogs are often seen as an accessory, or even a status symbol and I’m not just referring to those high maintenance individuals with their handbag dogs, but athletes and outdoor enthusiasts are just as bad! The search for the ubiquitous trail dog, or running companion, as if it’s the latest piece of training equipment, often sees a dog neglected when fitness decreases, or the next fad comes along.

Yes I have a dog, he’s a Shiba Inu called Chip and yes he makes many appearances in Instagram, in fact he has his own account Chip_The_Shiba, but he is not an accessory. Chip is a valued member of our expedition team, even if his good looks and charm do steal most of the attention away from my wife and I.

There’s a big difference between having an extra member of the team, to purely having a photo prop and Chip is definitely part of the team.

I’ve heard a lot of people who have a loving relationship with their pets refer to them as their fur babies, I am not one of those people! Chip is a furry explorer who joins my wife and I when we go kayaking, hiking, or even wondering around the city. With his fluffy tail and his infectious smile, it would be rude not to share him with the world, but he is as big a part of the our little family when the camera is away and the biggest adventure is from the sofa to the kitchen, as he is when there’s a stunning vista.

So far it is debatable whether Chip enjoys journeys in the car, epic Kayak trips, or back country hikes the most, as long as he shares them with us and there are some good smells and treats, then he is smiling away.

It may seem a little hypercritical lambasting individuals whose pets exist just for photo ops, by writing a story illustrated by my dogs own Instagram account, but remember I did say they aren’t just for Instagram!

Share your adventures, share those of your animals, opt outside and explore, but most of all remember that your furry companion should be a member of your family. Sure they will get you more likes and comments, but that should always be an added bonus to the love and affection that is shared between owner and pet and back again.

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