Chris Evans posted this video of his dog and nothing on the internet will ever be better.

If  somehow you haven't heard, April 11 is National Pet Day.

And that means it's the best time of the year. You're welcome (nay, encouraged) to share stories about your first canine companion or feline familiar. And where did your hamster come from, anyway? Are you always being told you share too many pictures of your guinea pigs online? (I am.)

Well, on National Pet Day, that's all forgiven and forgotten. Besides, if Facebook's gonna violate your privacy, you may as well inundate their servers with 27 nearly identical pictures of your cat stretching. Without further ado, here is my rabbit, Ms. Cleo, just chilling like it's her job. (Which it is.)


And here are my guinea pigs, Buddy and Andy, being coaxed into a "Little Mermaid" themed photo shoot. (This image cost me four bell pepper slices).

Lest you think this is just some elaborate ploy to post pictures of my animals on the internet (My editor said it was OK. Post yours in response. My DMs are open.), I have some unfortunate news: Nothing you share will be as awesome as what I'm about to show you.

Because this has all been a preamble to what may be the most heartwarming video of all time.

Captain America himself, aka actor Chris Evans, has posted a video of the first time he met his best friend Dodger.

Are you ready for this? Here's hoping you're a) sitting down and b) in a place that's not teeming with dust. Because there's about to be something in your eye.

Evans met Dodger when he was shooting "Gifted." And as soon as they saw each other, they knew it was forever.

“One of the last scenes we were filming was in a pound, a kennel,” he told People. “I foolishly walked in and I thought, ‘Are these actor dogs or are these real up for adoption dogs?’ And sure enough they were, so I was walking up and down the aisles and saw this one dude and he didn’t belong there. I snagged him and he’s such a good dog."

"They aged him at about one, he acts like a puppy, he’s got the energy of a puppy, he’s just such a sweetheart, he’s such a good boy. He loves dogs, he loves kids, he’s full of love.”

I'm not crying, you're crying. (OK, fine, maybe I am crying.)

Of course, this isn't the first time Evans has shared his dog with the world. In fact, Dodger's a frequent presence on Evans' twitter.

Here he is singing:

Here he is looking handsome:

And here are some of Evans' and Dodger's glamour shots:

The two can't bear to be apart.

Beyond the cuteness of the video, though, there's an important message: So many rescue animals need your love.

"Rescue dogs are the best dogs," Evans says in his post. And whether or not you share his opinion, the reality is there are lots of shelter pets looking for a loving forever home.

According to the ASPCA, roughly 6.5 million companion animals enter shelters each year. That number's declined steadily from 2011 (thanks to people like Evans), but there are still an estimated 3.3 million dogs and 3.2 million cats waiting for someone to love them. 3.2 million animals are adopted annually, but that number's got to grow. How could you say no to a face like Dodger's?

(The correct answer is that you can't.)

Rescuing an animal is also beneficial for you.

Let's get this out of the way: Adopting an animal isn't just good for the animal, it's good for everyone. According to the Humane Society of the United States, too many adoptable animals are euthanized in shelters because too few people think about adoption when they're looking for a pet.

And when you adopt an animal, you're not just saving its life, you're also fighting puppy mills — "factory-style breeding facilities" that usually focus  more on the dollar, not an animal's welfare. By adopting, the Humane Society notes, "you can be certain you aren't giving them a dime." And taking an animal in makes room for others to be helped too. So you're saving more than just the life of your new best friend.

Plus, adoption's also good for your health. Studies show that people who own dogs and cats are happier (less stress), healthier (cat owners have been found to have a lower risk of heart problems), and may even have an easier time finding romance (you know, if the love of a good dog just isn't enough).

But don't just take my word for it. The response to Evans' post has been adorably explosive, with many sharing photos of their own rescued friends.

After Evans posted his video, thousands of people began sharing pictures of their pets too. Click here and get ready to say "Awww," because your day is about to get a whole lot better.

Your day's better, right? It's better.

True

When a pet is admitted to a shelter it can be a traumatizing experience. Many are afraid of their new surroundings and are far from comfortable showing off their unique personalities. The problem is that's when many of them have their photos taken to appear in online searches.

Chewy, the pet retailer who has dedicated themselves to supporting shelters and rescues throughout the country, recognized the important work of a couple in Tampa, FL who have been taking professional photos of shelter pets to help get them adopted.

"If it's a photo of a scared animal, most people, subconsciously or even consciously, are going to skip over it," pet photographer Adam Goldberg says. "They can't visualize that dog in their home."

Adam realized the importance of quality shelter photos while working as a social media specialist for the Humane Society of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"The photos were taken top-down so you couldn't see the size of the pet, and the flash would create these red eyes," he recalls. "Sometimes [volunteers] would shoot the photos through the chain-link fences."

That's why Adam and his wife, Mary, have spent much of their free time over the past five years photographing over 1,200 shelter animals to show off their unique personalities to potential adoptive families. The Goldbergs' wonderful work was recently profiled by Chewy in the video above entitled, "A Day in the Life of a Shelter Pet Photographer."

This article originally appeared on 12.02.19


Just imagine being an 11-year-old boy who's been shuffled through the foster care system. No forever home. No forever family. No idea where you'll be living or who will take care of you in the near future.

Then, a loving couple takes you under their care and chooses to love you forever.

What could one be more thankful for?

That's why when a fifth grader at Deerfield Elementary School in Cedar Hills, Utah was asked by his substitute teacher what he's thankful for this Thanksgiving, he said finally being adopted by his two dads.

via OD Action / Twitter

To the child's shock, the teacher replied, "that's nothing to be thankful for," and then went on a rant in front of 30 students saying that "two men living together is a sin" and "homosexuality is wrong."

While the boy sat there embarrassed, three girls in the class stood up for him by walking out of the room to tell the principal. Shortly after, the substitute was then escorted out of the building.

While on her way out she scolded the boy, saying it was his fault she was removed.

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One of the boy's parents-to-be is Louis van Amstel, is a former dancer on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars." "It's absolutely ridiculous and horrible what she did," he told The Salt Lake Tribune. "We were livid. It's 2019 and this is a public school."

The boy told his parents-to-be he didn't speak up in the classroom because their final adoption hearing is December 19 and he didn't want to do anything that would interfere.

He had already been through two failed adoptions and didn't want it to happen again.

via Loren Javier / Flickr

A spokesperson for the Alpine School District didn't go into detail about the situation but praised the students who spoke out.

"Fellow students saw a need, and they were able to offer support," David Stephenson said. "It's awesome what happened as far as those girls coming forward."

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He also said that "appropriate action has been taken" with the substitute teacher.

"We are concerned about any reports of inappropriate behavior and take these matters very seriously," Kelly Services, the school the contracts out substitute teachers for the district, said in a statement. "We conduct business based on the highest standards of integrity, quality, and professional excellence. We're looking into this situation."

After the incident made the news, the soon-to-be adoptive parents' home was covered in paper hearts that said, "We love you" and "We support you."

Religion is supposed to make us better people.

But what have here is clearly a situation where a woman's judgement about what is good and right was clouded by bigoted dogma. She was more bothered by the idea of two men loving each other than the act of pure love they committed when choosing to adopt a child.