Once upon a time dogs entertained us in the circus or in Snoopy comic strips. These days they perform online to staggering audiences. YouTube’s Ultimate Dog Tease has 200 million views and Olive and Mabel, a recent phenomenon, has five million and rising.
At least these are normal dogs. Much, much freakier is @jiffpom, a pomeranian photographed wearing human baby clothes (10.4 million Instagram followers, 12 million likes on Facebook), or poor, quease-inducing @tunameltsmyheart, a deformed chihuahua/dachshund cross (2.1 million Instagram followers). Dog lovers can get interactive with WeRateDogs (8.9 million on Twitter), which makes so much money on merchandising that its teenage inventor quit university and hired his father, a lawyer. “Nobody’s going to stop liking dogs any time soon,” Matt Nelson told Money magazine.