Are "likes" really that important?

You’ve seen it, or maybe you’re guilty of it too. Checking your cell phone every minute or so to see if you got another “like” or comment on your most recent post on social media. I’ll admit it, I do this. Sometimes I may share something, usually a photo, and if I don’t get a positive response quickly, I’ll delete it. I won’t deny that I’ve gotten caught up in the whole instant gratification thing like so many others have.

Recently I learned that Instagram is currently testing a new feature - hiding “likes” on your account. You, as the account holder would still be able to see how many folks double tapped on your photo, but no one else would. At first I wasn’t too thrilled with this idea. That had more to do with the fact that I don’t like change. Though if Instagram is reading this, I would like the algorithm to change back so posts would show up from all the accounts I follow, in chronological order. I’m tired of being told what I “want” to see with some accounts not even showing up in my feed at all. If I liked their account, it’s because I want to see their posts!

But after some thought, I really do hope Instagram does away with the “like” count. Then maybe we’ll start to see authentic images, photos that reflect real life, you know those less than perfect moments. I used to love scrolling through my feed, but I’m finding myself checking in less and less often. There’s so many beautiful accounts, I just don’t think I can begin to compete to get people to follow me. Ironically, the number of “likes” on average for my feed remains the same as it has for several years now. But looking at other feeds and seeing “likes” that are double, triple or even Duodecuple (did you know that was even a word?) mine makes me question whether I should even have an Instagram account sometimes.

But here’s the thing. We all think we want to be the “best”, the most popular, the most talked about account amongst our peers. But what we really want is to be seen, heard, and to know that we do matter. I follow some people even though I know I’ll never buy their service or product, but because they are authentic. They share their trials, tribulations, triumphs and the journey that got them there. I find myself rooting for them when things don’t go right and celebrating over their successes. I’ve never met any of these folks, but I feel like I know them just from following their accounts. It doesn’t matter to me that they have 1 “like”, 100 “likes” or even 10,000 “likes”, I still like them.

If Instagram does hide “likes” I think we’re going to see more real world posts from instagramers. No more sharing a certain post because the poster knows it will elicit thousands of thumbs to double tap on the photo. It will hopefully put an end to our unhealthy comparison to other social media users. Instead, it should encourage more interaction with one another. Which is, after all, what we’re all longing for anyways.

What do you think about this feature? Are you in favor of it or not? Are you guilty of not sharing something because you don’t think you’ll get as many likes as you want? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts!

Thanks for reading!


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terrier mix in Florida

The best dog Instagram accounts to follow

I don't know about you, but I love Instagram! I spend more time there than I do on Facebook anymore. While I get frustrated with the algorithms (like I do on Facebook), it's just so much happier and fun over there! And that might have more to do with the accounts I choose to follow than anything.

I have my favorite people that I look forward to seeing in my feed. That includes my friends, of course, my fellow pet photographers and the world travelers who share their experiences with the rest of us that dream of living life in their shoes! I love seeing adventures and landscapes from all over the world. But mostly, though, are the daily antics of the pets I follow that make me laugh and smile keeping me addicted to this app! So today, I thought I'd share a few of these accounts that you should be following if you aren't already.

With so at least 750 million Instagram users out there, how do you find and know which accounts are worth following? Well, first you can start with hash tagging your favorite breed of dog. Mine happens to be the golden retriever, and that's how I found @lizzie.bear. The adventures of 2 goldens, Lizzie and lil sis Ally, from Canada is quite possibly my favorite account. With posts almost on a daily basis, I find myself falling in love with these girls over and over again!



If you loved the book "Maddie on Things" by Theron Humphrey, you'll love his Instagram account @thiswildidea. A continuation of Maddie on things, under things, around things as this pair travel around the country. 



Next up is a dog who inspires other dog owners to get outside with their pups. Part dog, part wolf, @loki_the_wolfdog has over a million followers for a reason. Perhaps you've seen the very popular photo of Loki in a hammock with his owner? Definitely worth a look if you enjoy adventures all around this beautiful country of ours.


Like a fluffy dog with a lot of attitude, then you're going to love @poochofnyc's account! Any bad hair day you're having will be better after you get your morning dose of Agador. Seriously!



I just discovered @Manny_the_frenchie's account and for the life of me, I can't explain how it took me so long to find him. Photos coupled with hilarious captions of this runt of the litter went viral and last year the book "Manny the Frenchie's Art of Happiness" was published. For anyone who loves the bully breed, or just needs a daily dose of happiness, you need to be following this dog! 



Not sure whether the captions make the photos or the photos make the captions, but @itsdougthepug's account is hilarious, cheesy, and so creative, you'll wish you came up with this stuff! Head over to Instagram and start following this wild pug's account, if you aren't already!



I love a story like Marnie's. A shih tzu, she was adopted from a shelter when she was 11 years old after being rescued from the streets in Connecticut. Having lost all her teeth to tooth decay, and a permanent head tilt due to vestibular disease, she's got a face that over 2 million followers have fallen in love with! 



One thing I love about social media is that you can follow accounts from all over the world. We may not understand the language, but it doesn't matter on an app like Instagram where pictures are truly worth a thousand words. Perhaps the happiest dog on earth, Maru, a shiba Inu who hails from Japan, has garnered over 2 million fans who enjoy simple everyday life as a dog, but with a smile.


There's just something about a Pomeranian. Maybe it's their small size, or their big eyes, or just their uncanny ability to look more like a stuffed toy than a real dog. You already know about. Boo, who became famous on Facebook, but have you heard of @jiffpom? I hadn't until recently either, but about 3 photos into this account, I was already madly in love! He set the record in 2017 for having over 8 million followers for an animal!!! Now that's a lot of fans!!


Ok, so this last account doesn't belong to a dog, but I couldn't resist. Lil Bub was the runt of her litter and was born with multiple health issues including an extreme form of feline dwarfism. She has helped raised awareness about adoption raising money for the ASPCA. A tiny cat, she has a huge following with over 1 million fans!


What are some of your favorite dog and cat Instagram accounts I should be following? Share in the comments below!