Should You Bring Up Your Pet During an Online Dating Conversation?

Man bringing his dog with him on his date

So, you’ve got them hooked. You’ve pretty much broken the ice, and the conversation is starting to flow. And all the while, your favorite companion has been keeping you company.

Whether you’ve got a fine-feathered friend, a fluffy cat or dog, or a not-so-fluffy reptile, your pet means the world to you. If they disapprove of the person you’re talking to, they may just have to go.

You start to become tempted – I want to bring up my pet. The potential love of your life should know about the current, snuggly love of your life – correct? But is it the right time? Or is it even the right thing to do?

And what if you have a pet mouse or pet spider that might send this romantic interest running for the hills? You want to know if it’ll be an issue and if they can handle all that cuteness – but don’t want to scare them off too soon, either.

Should you bring up your pet? The answer is yes – but how and when you talk about them is crucial. It can make the difference between bringing that other dog lover into your life or making them feel like they’ll never be the most important thing in your life.

How to Bring Up Your Pet

You may just want to blurt out, “I love my dog more than I may ever love any person,” and immediately hit send – just to, you know, let them know where you’re at and that you’ve set a high bar for them to reach. But this is not a winning strategy in terms of pet-related conversation.

The best way is to start talking about what you’re doing at the moment and include your pet in the process. This helps set the scene for the person you’re talking to so they can get a decent picture of your day-to-day life. And it makes a statement that your beloved pet is an integral part of your best life.

And if you have one of the more unique pets – say, a tarantula – now’s the time to let them know. The earlier, the better so that arachnophobe can go ahead and start building the courage to meet your best multi-legged friend. I mean, you’re worth them braving new territory.

And if they genuinely can’t handle meeting your snake, you want to know now. Why waste your time talking to someone who can’t love a reptilian angel?

Incorporating your pet into a snippet about your everyday life is the best way to breach the topic. Try not to be too blatantly excessive about your love for your co-pilot – they’ll get the message without you going above and beyond to explain it.

If you are tempted to go into immediate detail about your fascination with your cat’s uninterrupted gaze, try to save the explanation of your favorite kind of staring contest for later. It’s just not the time yet.

When to Bring Up Your Pet

When you make it to your first date, and you have some beefy conversational time to pass with each other, then you can get more into it. But short and sweet messages work best when you’re getting to know each other over an online dating platform.

We know you’re passionate about your pet – and rightfully so! They probably get the idea of just how much you love your little one from you bringing them up briefly. To show how this happens, let’s turn this around and put you in their shoes – how would you react? What would you think?

So you’ve just started talking to a person, and the conversation’s going pretty well. They seem to like your style of chatting and have told you a bit about themselves. They’ve got a great job, seem super positive, and have exciting aspirations – it looks like they’re going somewhere in life. And that’s the kind of partner you’re looking for.

Then, you two start talking about what you’re doing at that moment. They say they’re sitting, watching TV, and snuggling their dog. You immediately know that that’s one of their favorite ways to spend their time, and their dog is meaningful to them. You’ve got the idea that their dog is a significant part of their everyday life.

Now let’s look into two scenarios regarding when they bring up more information about their pet.

Scenario 1: Too Much, Too Soon

The first scenario is where you’re still chatting online, and they keep talking about their pet. You now know their dog’s breed, mannerisms, and favorite toy. They’ve made it clear that their dog is the gatekeeper to your heart, and if that dog is having a bad day when they meet you, you’re out of luck.

Do you feel significant at this point? Do you feel like they actually care about the type of person you are or that anything you’ve told them matters? Or do you feel like this person only cares about their dog, and you’re effectively wasting your time?

Or – are you thinking the person you’re talking to is so simple that winning over their dog is the same thing as winning them over? It’s like they’re not even a whole person anymore. It’s like they’re the pet, and you’re working to date their dog.

Scenario 2: Interesting Anecdotes to Share on Your First Date

Now we’re in scenario two, where this person has mentioned their dog but left it at that. You’ve talked about a bunch of different topics and only discussed their dog in a short snippet of conversation. They seem well-adjusted and dateable, and you’ve officially scheduled your first date!

So you get there, and you sit down at a table together. You’ve already talked about lots online – and the conversation starts to lull after you’ve told each other about your days. Suddenly, a stroke of genius – pet to the rescue. Even when they’re not with them, their pet is obviously your date’s spirit guide, and it works for you.

They start talking about how adorable their dog is, telling hilarious stories about them. They go into how they ended up getting their dog in the first place and how having them is a deeply meaningful part of their lives. You’re taken on a journey of pet-related anecdotes that make your date incredibly enjoyable, and you can’t wait to meet their dog!

Which Scenario Will You Choose?

So – it’s up to you! Which of these dates do you want to be on? Do you want to be the person who brings up their pet briefly and digs into the details later – when the time is right? Or do you want to dive in too deep from the get and risk pushing your new love interest away?

We’re not here to tell you what to do! The amount and intensity of what you share about your pet early on is entirely up to you. But taking it slowly shows your date you’re more than your obsession with your pet.

Plus, it leaves the door open for you to share your favorite stories about them in the event the conversation gets a little slow on your first date – which is bound to happen more often than not. Conversation lulls are a natural part of the dating process, and keeping one of your favorite topics up your sleeve isn’t going to hurt one bit.

Matt Marino
Matt Marino

Matt Marino is an online content writer for, specializing in trending blogs and dating app reviews. He is a graduate of Geneva College with a Bachelor of the Arts in Communications.