Muttbombing: Rescue Photoshops Adoptable Dogs into Celeb Selfies

PetMD Editorial
Updated: January 30, 2018
Published: March 13, 2014
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Don’t you just hate it when an adorable dog photobombs himself into your pictures? Yeah, we don’t mind it either, especially when they’re cute strays that need forever homes.

Muttbombing” is an idea that Dallas Pets Alive! and Dieste advertising agency came up with to show the organization’s homeless dogs in a new light.

The organization’s dogs are professionally photoshopped into pictures found on social media of people doing different things in Dallas, or they are put into photos with celebrities found on social media, like Bradley Cooper's selfie at this year's Oscars. The text is in the voice of the dog.

The caption of a recent photo with Ryan Gosling says, "Hey, Ryan Gosling, Can I follow you home? Cause my parents always told me to follow my dreams. I'm Max and this is not a Valentine's Day pick up line. I'm #muttbombing you in hopes of finding a home."

The program only went live about a month ago, but Leslie Sans, executive director of Dallas Pets Alive!, told Pet360 that the first weekend after the photos went live, they had a “huge” amount of traffic at an adoption event, where four dogs were adopted and the organization signed up more volunteers and foster homes. Since the organization is all foster based, that is very important to the Dallas Pets Alive! program. “People came out just to see the photobombing dogs,” said Sans.

#Muttbombing photos are also finding their way all over social media, way beyond Dallas.    

“Selfies are in and so are photo bombs, so we thought of mutt bombing,” Sans shared. “The idea was to make adopting the cool thing to do.”

When Sans moved to Dallas from Austin, Texas, where she volunteered, she wanted to bring the Austin Pets Alive! model to see how it could help the animals in Dallas. Sans founded the organization in September 2012 in the hopes of eventually making Dallas, Texas, a no-kill city.

“We pull from Dallas Animal Services. These are the dogs that are on the euth list, it is their last chance,” Sans explained.

In fact, Dallas Animal Services is a very high-kill shelter. Although they’re reporting a 46 percent decrease in kills since 2007, its 2013 statistics still reflect an over 50 percent kill rate of all intakes.

Dallas has some very dedicated animal rescues and people working to make Dallas a no-kill city, including Sylvia Elzafron, a photographer whose portraits of DAS animals needing homes have gone viral.

Sans said that the professionals at Dieste advertising wanted to help make a difference in the community and volunteered their image editing services.

Enlisting the help of ad agencies is a very savvy thing for shelters to do. During the Super Bowl, the ads starring animals are typically the most popular. We also recently told you about the SPCA of Wake County who had an ad agency film their shelter workers dancing to ABBA’s “Take a Chance on Me,” which drew in a huge response.

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Just last year, Dallas Pets Alive! rescued 64 dogs and one cat, and in 2014 they expect to at least triple that number.

“We just hope it makes our city one step closer to no-kill,” said Sans.  

Editor’s Note: Muttbombing photo courtesy of Dallas Pets Alive!