by Terri Johnson Florentino

It’s said a picture says 1000 words, but this picture seems to have said so much more.  John Unger’s picture of him tenderly floating his aging and arthritic dog Schoep in Lake Superior became an instant Internet sensation in 2012 and resurfaced recently upon Schoep’s death:


So what is it about the human-animal bond that so intrigues us? Is it our inherent desire to love and comfort? Do we believe we are better people if we allow ourselves to feel the unconditional love of an animal? Does it help us to feel better about ourselves when we help an innocent creature? Is that why it’s often said in canine rescue, “who saved who?” At what point  do we put too much pressure on our pets to comfort us? Are we guilty of anthropomorphism, or the projection of human motives and behaviors, when we feel loved by and loving toward animals?

So tell me, what word comes to your  mind when you look at the picture of the man with his dog?

8 responses to “Anthropomorphism?

  1. Makes me thing about how much a miss my Breac.

    • Oh, Ann! I’m sorry! They’re such huge parts of our lives, aren’t they?

    • I am so sorry, Annie. We never really get over the loss of such a beloved companion. Breac was a very special lady, dearly loved by so many. The best we can hope for is to learn to deal with the pain. Time does heal, but we never forget.

  2. These moments are worth one million dollars…..

  3. Oh my gosh! Schoep and Reilly could be related…they look exactly alike! Makes me want to go hug her and never let go!

    • Terri Florentino

      You’re right, Elise! Schoep does look a lot like Reilly. How is Reilly these days? She can be a nice rescue story for the blog.

  4. Terri Florentino

    Thank you Elise for giving her such a wonderful life!

Whatcha thinking? Gimme that! Grr! Grr!

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