We’re a few weeks into coronavirus social-distancing, and staying at home all the time is starting to take its toll on everyone.
We all miss socializing and seeing our friends — and it turns out, we’re not alone: our dogs feel the same way, and miss seeing people and other dogs at the park.
That’s certainly the case for one lonely bulldog, whose heartbreaking expression has made him a viral star and the perfect mascot for our collective mood during this crisis.
Rashinda Ellis, a costume designer from Atlanta, is the owner of a friendly English bulldog named Big Poppa.
The dog loves socializing: “He loves children and then other dogs and then adults, in that order,” Rashinda told Buzzfeed News.
But the COVID-19 lockdown means he has to stay home… and, like so many of us, he’s feeling a little lonely.
“The sad thing is we have to social-distance even him,” Rashinda said. “When he’s inside, he just walks out to the patio looking for people.”
“He’s sleeping more. He’s a little sluggish. I can tell he’s not as happy and excited as he usually is. He’s probably tired of just me playing with him.”
He especially misses playing with all the kids in his building. While in quarantine, Pop can only watch them from his patio.
While watching them play, Pop looked so sad… and Rashinda took an adorably heartbreaking photo and posted it on Twitter:
She never expected anything would come of the photo… it was just something to share with her friends.
But soon, it went viral — many people understandably saw themselves in this cooped-up dog, and Pop became a symbol for all of us.
Many people wrote that we need to find a cure to the disease just to make Big Poppa happy again:
We need to make the world a better one for Big Poppa 😩 https://t.co/AhADexy4OO— Jessica Valenti (@JessicaValenti) April 22, 2020
Others shared photos of their own dogs, who are going through the same thing:
I live right across an elementary school and since it’s closed cause of covid my lil baby misses playing with the little kids 😔 pic.twitter.com/OVo3jcvwiC— Miguel (@uhhhitmiguel) April 22, 2020
Omg he’s perfect!! Potato misses his friends too, he’s just a pup and needs to be socializing! 🥔🐶 pic.twitter.com/ALdZERq3o0— Jake (@Rodfather84) April 22, 2020
Even celebrities fell in love with Big Poppa, including Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams and Ellen DeGeneres.
It’s a reminder that while things may be hard and we miss things from our old lives, we’re all in this together and we need to continue to stay safe and be strong.
And remember, if you’re not doing it for yourself, do it for Big Poppa.
We can’t wait until this is all over and Big Poppa will be able to roam free and play with all his friends again! Share this story!