There is no denying that we are living in The Age of The Dog and it did not happen by accident.
Not long ago, it was The Age of The Cat. The advent of the Internet brought with it Keyboard Cat and the hilarious cynicism of Grumpy Cat. We suddenly had access to infinite human knowledge – all at our fingertips – a feat entirely unimaginable to our great grandparents. And people, mostly, wanted to google the word ‘cat’.
But in 2017, cats are second class citizens. ‘Doggo’ and ‘pupper’ memes have infiltrated the zeitgeist, bringing with them a new dog-specific language including words like ‘boop’, ‘snoot’, ‘mlerm’ ‘heckin’ and ‘smol’. The Facebook page ‘Bork Bork I Am Doggo’ has almost half a million followers, significantly more than, say, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
The most popular animal on Facebook is a dog named Boo, who has more than 17.1 million followers. The next most popular animal is a cat, who has less than half the following.
On the 3rd of January, 2016, the term 'cute dogs' overtook the search 'funny cats' in global searches.
I rest my case.
I have a dog named Caesar Pius Grounds, and he dominates a majority of my conversations.
He is always wearing a suit which is silly because he looks overdressed for most occasions. When he goes swimming, he looks just like a seal, so we call him Seal-sar.
Caesar has a degree in engineering, and now he works for the council in the department of 'parks'. Mostly, he advocates that there should be more of them. Sometimes when he seems restless we say to him tersely, "Caesar use your words!" Yesterday, he ate half a packet of grain waves and then blamed it on the cat (we don't have a cat).
I speak to Caesar more than some of my colleagues, and if that isn't escapism then I don't know what is.