ORLANDO — Social media has been successfully used by people across the globe in a variety of ways — to advance political causes, to hunt for jobs or find new employees, to introduce original art and music to the world.
As it turns out, social media can go a long way toward helping a stray puppy as well.
Consider the case in Orlando of Ginger Rogers.
That’s the name given by Orange County Animal Services to a shelter dog — and for good reason. This stray quickly proved she had a unique skills — and has demonstrated that by dancing excitedly in her kennel, which the shelter’s staff is convinced was definitely a way for the pup to find herself a new home.
As a result, the shelter staff dubbed the pup Ginger Rogers.
“As staff, volunteers and shelter visitors walk by Ginger Rogers’ kennel, she stands up on her back two paws and hops around in circles,” noted Carolina Devine, the marketing and public relations coordinator for Orange County Animal Services.
Ginger Rogers was found as a stray on Feb. 8 on the corner of Oakridge and John Young Parkway. Once taken to the shelter, an exam revealed she had tested positive for heartworm disease, “which is a curable condition but can be a deterrent for prospective adopters,” Devine noted.
On the other hand, the dog quickly demonstrated that special talent for standing up and dancing. That impressed the shelter’s volunteer coordinator, Crystal Kincaid, who captured Ginger Rogers’ dance moves on video, then uploaded it to the Animal Services’ Facebook page.
Once again, social media proved to have a very wide reach.
“After only 55 minutes, it has gone viral and has reached more 2,000 views,” Devine noted.
That video proved to be a highly successful marketing tool for the adorable dog. Shortly afterwards, Animal Services posted on its Facebook page that Ginger had been adopted — the very next day.
“Ginger Rogers danced her way into hearts yesterday when her video was shared on social media,” the Facebook post noted. “It’s been viewed more than 100,000 times and shared by multiple news outlets …. Miss Ginger was adopted earlier today and she will soon be raising the roof under her new roof!”
There are plenty more cats and dogs at the shelter looking for a home. Orange County Animal Services is located at 2769 Conroy Road in Orlando, open for adoptions Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 1-5 p.m.
To learn more, call 407-836-3111.
It’s the largest pet rescue and adoption center in Central Florida, and it received nearly 20,000 animals at its shelter in 2015.
Michael Freeman is an Orlando journalist, playwright and author of the book “Bloody Rabbit”. Contact him at Freelineorlando@gmail.com..