When Your Best Surrogate Can’t Talk

Fans follow the ups and downs of the dogs’ lives, learning of their hopes and passions, including those that have to do with peanut butter. In October, the subject was Buddy’s Halloween costume, a shiny green-and-yellow outfit, the meaning of which was unclear at first.

“OMG GOT MY HALOSWEEN COSTUM,” the dog (or someone in the voice of the dog) wrote. “DO YOU WANT TO SEEZ IT OMG I AM so EXCITE.”

But what was it, exactly? The caption on the photo said it. “ACVOCADO”

The Buttigieg dogs have taken a bold approach to the classic Twitter conundrum: Do you say some normal thing while abiding by conventional rules of spelling, grammar and punctuation, or are we pioneering a whole new freestyling vernacular in which there seems to be no filter between our random fleeting thoughts and our thrilled belief that other people want to hear them?

Don’t ask the Buttigieg campaign. “Buddy and Truman have full creative control over their Twitter account,” Tess Whittlesey, deputy national press secretary, said via email.

As for the dogs’ part in the campaign: “The dogs primarily serve in the important role of South Bend representatives for the campaign while Pete and Chasten are on the road,” she said. “They have quite the following in South Bend as well, and always enjoy running into friends and neighbors when they are walking around the city. They haven’t hit the campaign trail quite yet, but hope to soon.”

Interestingly enough, Bailey does not have his own social media account. An independent fan account (@FirstDogBailey) is operated by 28-year-old Robert Abare, who works for a think tank in Washington.

In contrast to the Buttigieg dogs’ Twitter account, which is managed by humans “as if they’re actually dogs who can’t speak English and don’t understand what Twitter is,” Mr. Abare said, “I took an approach that Warren is an intellectual who is running this aggressive campaign focused on issues like corruption.”

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