We’re All the Same When We Love a Dog

Golden Retriever and hound mix

When a dog story makes even Johnny Carson tear up, you know we’re pretty special.

When I was in high school, we didn’t have the World Wide Web to send shocking, funny, or touching video to the four corners of the earth. But some things became viral anyway. The video below, from 1981, is one of them.

I did not see the original show on which Jimmy Stewart read his poem about his dog Beau. But I saw the clip on other shows after that.

The humor and joy Stewart expresses about his dog is something we can all relate to. When we love a dog, we understand a little piece of someone else who loves a dog. Loving (and losing) ac canine friend is the great equalizer. And that’s why, before it was easy to make video go viral, this one did.

Thanks to Buzzfeed for reminding me of this great video.

Do you feel a stronger connection with someone when  you know they love dogs?

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  1. I remember that video. So simple, yet so heartfelt. Yes, definitely I feel a stronger connection to someone when I know they love dogs. It’s not only a connection, but kind of an affirmation of character–to love a dog, you must be able to open your heart.

  2. That was great Pamela. You made my peoples eyes leak.

  3. I’ve seen this a few times now and I cry every time. I’d love to watch it again because it’s just so sweet but I think I will wait till this evening. When I can weep alone.

    I live in such a bubble these days that I am always stunned when someone tells me they don’t care for dogs. It’s only happened twice that I can remember in the last few years but I am shocked into silence.

    • Hearing someone’s not fond of dogs makes me a little disappointed but it doesn’t shock me. But hearing that someone “hates” dogs sure does. It’s such extreme language.

      The only time I was more shocked was when a college friend told me he hated cheese. Hating a food item that comes in thousands of flavors and textures across the board is just insane.

  4. I’ve never seen it! We were laughing and then at the end my biped got that leaky eye problem.

  5. I have seen that video and love it. I don’t necessarily feel a “stronger connection” when I know that someone loves dogs but I DEFINITELY stay away from those that do not like dogs. My friend’s father always said “never trust anyone who doesn’t like dogs” or any animals for that matter.

  6. Thank you for posting this. It is so touching!

  7. I have definitely changed my view of someone when I found out they love dogs. Just recently in fact… I’ve never been a fan of Howard Stern, but I heard he was devastated about the loss of his dog. I don’t usually watch America’s Got Talent, but happened to be channel surfing past and saw him talking about his beloved dog. It made me realize I have something in common with him!

    • I can’t imagine I’d ever come to like Howard Stern, myself. But yes, hearing that someone loves dogs makes he pause a little while and look deeper to see what else is there.

  8. Thank you for posting this video. I now have to go hug BJ and tell him I love him.

  9. I don’t remember ever seeing it, but my eyes are leaking too! LOL

    Generally I think we are drawn to people who have similar interests to ours. When you find someone who loves dogs it is a starting place, a bonding point. It gives you something in common to start with and hopefully you can grow from there.

    I’m like Kristine, when I hear of people who don’t like dogs, or who don’t care for them like I do, I’m shocked. How can you not love dogs?

    As the video proved, dogs touch our lives in many ways. It was obvious that Jimmy Stewart loved his dog and missed him terribly. Thanks for sharing.

    • So true, Jodi. We seek out people who are like us.

      I’m thrilled to have made friends with people whose tastes, styles of living, and politics are very different from mine because we’ve been able to form a bond over dogs. I feel my life is so much richer for it.

  10. Absolutely. Whenever I hear about a celeb who adopts or who loves dogs, I have to feel good about that. Justin Beiber and Selena Gomez–not really my cup of tea, but they made a big deal of rescuing their pup. Cool thing to get pre-pubertal girls jazzed about, and what better way to do it!

    • I read somewhere recently that Justin Bieber has a higher Klout score (measuring his online influence) than President Obama. The writer sounded shocked.

      But Bieber engages with his fans and they respond to him. I didn’t know about the rescue pup but this sounds like a great way to start a movement.

  11. It makes a big difference to me if someone has a dog. Political affiliations fade (especially important during the next couple of months here!) and personal ideologies mean less. How people treat or feel about a dog tells me a lot. I do feel a kinship toward fellow dog lovers.

    • Studies show that people’s political, religious, and other view points become more extreme when they only spend time with people who agree with them. Hanging out with dog people who think differently than we do could bring the healing this country needs to cooperate across political opinions. :)

  12. I’m crying. Thanks for sharing this, Pamela. I’ve never seen it. Yes, I think people who love and respect dogs/animals are somehow nicer and I like them better than ones who don’t.

    • I’ve always been drawn to people who have strong passion for something, even if it’s a subject I don’t relate to myself. There’s something exciting about someone opening their heart to a fresh idea or activity that’s thrilling.

      And, yes, when their passion is animals, it’s easy to form a bond.

  13. Mike Webster says:

    One more reason to love Jimmy Stewart. . . God bless you, Jimmy.

  14. I need to keep this posted on my blog – he says so much with such compassion and care – class act all the way, Jimmy.
    I do feel a connection with others who love dogs, horses and cats; we immediately have something to talk about :).

  15. I must have missed that show. This is the first time I have seen the video and many thanks for sharing it. Such a beautiful man. Pets can sure bring out the best in their people.

  16. I still remember that video, and I love it!

    I definitely agree that I find people a lot more approachable when I know that they’re dog lovers and more likely to understand me. I can’t think of something else that I have a strong interest in where I’d feel as relaxed with others who shared my interest, though.

  17. We never saw this – and didn’t know Jimmy Stewart was a dog lover. Pets connect us humans for sure!

  18. I definitely do feel a stronger connection with dog lovers… who else could I become friends with via blog and then in real life? :)


  1. […] The woman I was delivering the plans to is a dog lover and we’ve talked dog before.  It’s true what Pamela at Something Wagging says, We’re All The Same When We Love a Dog. […]