Just like humans, dogs have personalities and preferences. One of the dogs owned by Donald Trump is named after the 45th president of the United States—a fact that the pup’s Twitter account documents with regular updates about the commander-in-chief’s day-to-day life. The account’s creator calls the dog’s perspective on the Trump administration “hilarious.” 

The Account Follows the President’s Every Move

The @RealTrumpDog account begins with the following description:

“The OFFICIAL Twitter account of Donald J. Trump (@RealTrumpDog). Following the President’s every move and keeping him company during his down time are the things this account is focused on.”

The dog’s bio notes that it was created in November 2017 and that it is “following the presidency of @RealTrumpDog and relaying the funniest stories and events as they happen.” It also states that the account will not “tweet about politics or religion.”

While the account is focused on documenting the amusing antics of America’s favorite pup, it also provides an inside look at the lives of the 44th president of the United States and his family. For instance, when Trump was sworn in as president in January 2017, the dog’s first tweet was a photo of the occasion with the caption, “IN MEMORY OF AMERICA’S GREAT PATRIOTS & AMERICA’S BELOVED ORDINARY CITIZENS LEGENDARY PEOPLES DAY PARADE.”

When the president took a victory lap around Central Park after the inauguration, @RealTrumpDog shared a video of the event with the following description: “WOW! What a spectacular day. Thank you to all those who participated in making it happen. Big applause and lots of fun! The best is yet to come. #trump2016

The account is also filled with photos of the Trumps with their dogs. When the president’s youngest son, Donald Trump Jr., accompanied him on a trip to Africa last year, the first stop was Kenya, where the Trumps saw many animals including elephants and rhinos. The family spent most of their time on safari, and the African continent appears to have inspired much of the clothing and accessory brands that the Trumps wear.

The president himself is a well-known animal lover, and he often poses with his dogs. When the @RealTrumpDog account tweeted a photo of Trump holding a baby gorilla, the president replied, “Thank you! It’s always such a pleasure to meet a fellow animal lover. Keep them coming! #RealDonaldTrump.”

The ‘POTUS’ Behind the Account’s Name

The account’s name is a play on the words “president of the United States” and “dog.” It’s not a coincidence that the president’s official Twitter account is also named “@POTUS.” According to the bio on the @RealTrumpDog account, this is because “the office of the President was once thought to be a good fit for a dog.”

Back in the 1800s, people used to enter politics as a hobby or pastime, and candidates would often keep a pet dog with them while they were campaigning. It wasn’t until the 20th century that politicians began to see their positions as a professional responsibility, and they started to see their dogs as a liability, especially after William McKinley was assassinated by a mad dog named “Cynthia” in 1901.

While he never fully recovered from the attack, President Theodore Roosevelt, who was then in the middle of a second term, did everything in his power to ensure that future presidents didn’t have to fear being assassinated by their pet dogs. He pushed for heightened regulation of the canine pet industry and insisted that all dogs living in the White House be put down, fearing that they might turn on their masters.

After McKinley’s death, canine pets were rarely, if ever, seen in the White House. While there were still a few pets around at the time, including a cat named Fiddle who was carried around by French president and animal rights activist, Georges Clemenceau, Secret Service agents would often take care of them. The last documented instance of a puppy in the White House was in 1968, when a Saint Bernard named Barney became the first breed of dog to live in the oval office. Since then, all dogs have been kept outside of the White House.

The @RealTrumpDog account, which is now followed by more than 500,000 people, continues this tradition of using dogs as a metaphor for political satire. In addition to being the founder and administrator of the account, Peter Griffin, a writer for Comedy Central’s “The President Show,” is also the creator of @RealLiamDogg, an account that mocks former president Barack Obama. The two accounts, along with a third account named @RealKimJongUn, will soon be joined by other similar satirical accounts that target other world leaders.

Creative Commons

The owner of the @RealTrumpDog account is not afraid to share his or her creative side, and it shows in the account’s design. While the creator doesn’t give out his or her identity, the account is linked to Griffin’s profile on the website Creative Commons, which allows users to retain copyrights to their work while also making it available to the public, provided that they follow a few simple guidelines.

The website’s founder, Lawrence Lessig, spoke with the New York Times about Creative Commons and said that while it was originally designed for artists, it has also become a “multi-purpose tool” that allows everyone from teachers to nonprofit organizations to share their work for free.

Lessig also said that Twitter, other social media platforms, and even Google search have been impacted by the shift to digital content, and he expects that future generations will look back at the information age in the same way that we now look back at the baby boomers’ involvement in the space race. “When that time comes,” he said, “people are going to say, ‘What was it that got us here? Why did we go through this enormous transformation?’”

While it’s too early to predict what the future of online media will look like, we already know that it’s changing the way we will look back at history. The next generation is already being shaped by the pandemic, and many of them are now growing up with a digital footprint that won’t be forgotten.