Welcome to the ultimate destination for dog enthusiasts and social media mavens alike. At Dogfluencers, we're passionate about showcasing the best and brightest in the world of four-legged fame.

Whether you're looking for adorable photos, heartwarming stories, or expert tips on how to turn your own pup into a social media star, we've got you covered.

Today we got the honor of interviewing Morena (Rio's Human). You can find a direct link to their Instagram here.

Here is their story:

Can you tell us about your journey to becoming a dog influencer? What inspired you to start sharing your dog's adventures on social media?

Negovetic: My journey to becoming a dog influencer started quite by chance. I always felt that Rio was special—his personality and antics could brighten anyone's day. I hesitated to share this on social media, but when posts about Rio on my personal profile got more attention than anything else, I thought, 'It's now or never.' Just as Rio was about to turn 12, I decided it was the perfect time to start. That decision, made just over two months ago, was the right one, as we quickly grew a following of over 20,000 people.

I also share our experiences and insights on my blog at https://goldenyearspaws.com. While it's not just about Rio, it focuses on senior dogs in general, offering tips and stories that resonate with other pet lovers who cherish their aging companions. The blog has been a great way to connect deeper with our community and to share the special joy that senior dogs bring into our lives every day.

What do you think sets your dog apart from other dogs on social media? What makes them unique or particularly interesting to your followers?

Negovetic: I think what makes Rio truly special and stand out on social media is his unique charm, highlighted by his signature boots—hence our profile name 'Rio Lab in Boots.' We started using boots daily two years ago when Rio was diagnosed with allergic pododermatitis, a condition that causes painful sores on his paws. Before we had the boots, walking was a painful ordeal for him, and he would cry and hurry back home immediately after doing his business. However, the boots have been a game changer, allowing him to enjoy our walks just like he used to.

Rio is an active 12-year-old Labrador who loves swimming—a natural fit given his breed! Living in Croatia, a beautiful Mediterranean country, offers him plenty of opportunities to enjoy the water all year round. On our Instagram, we share our daily adventures, showcasing the stunning landscapes of Croatia—from its crystal-clear seas to picturesque mountains. Our followers also enjoy glimpses into our family moments, celebrations, and friendships. We've built a close connection with people worldwide who appreciate not just Rio's adventures but also the positivity and beauty we try to share through our posts. Despite his age and allergies, Rio remains joyful and eager, and through our social media, we aim to spread that same positivity and joy.

How do you come up with ideas for your dog's posts and content? Do you have a specific creative process?

Negovetic: I've always been a creative person, brimming with ideas that I'm eager to share. I find inspiration for Rio's posts everywhere in our daily life. Ideas often pop up at the most unexpected times, so I've learned it's crucial to jot them down immediately. To make sure I don't forget anything, I keep a special section in my phone where I record thoughts as they come. Later, when the time is right, I revisit these ideas to develop our next posts.

Additionally, I draw inspiration from other Instagram accounts and from our interactions with followers. I take note of which posts our audience enjoys most and the kind of content that sparks lively reactions and comments. This feedback helps me create new posts that resonate well with our followers, keeping our content engaging and relevant. With a wealth of ideas always at the ready, I look forward to continuing to share Rio's adventures and our creative explorations with the world.

Have you ever faced any challenges or negativity on social media, and how have you dealt with it?

Negovetic: Although we've only been active in this world for a little over two months, our posts have reached a vast audience. One of our reels even surpassed a million views, which was incredibly exciting. Despite this broad exposure, we have not encountered any negativity. The community that follows us is full of positivity, kind words, and empathy. This supportive environment not only gives us strength but also encourages us to continue sharing our content in the same manner. I’m aware that negativity is quite common on social media, so I feel very fortunate and grateful that our experience has been so overwhelmingly positive and free of negativity.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to start their own dog influencer account or share their dog on social media?

Negovetic: If you have an idea or a vision for sharing your dog on social media, my best advice is simply to start. The worst that can happen is that you stop posting, and that’s not a disaster at all. On the flip side, your account might take off like ours did, and the possibilities could be endless. It's important to remember that consistency is key. Not every post will attract the same level of attention, and that’s perfectly normal. Be consistent, stay true to your audience, and maintain honesty and openness in your posts. People really value authenticity, and staying genuine almost guarantees success. Just take that first step, and keep going.

How has your dog influenced your life outside of social media?

Negovetic: Having Rio in my life, especially as he has grown into his senior years, has influenced me profoundly. From him, I've learned the true essence of discipline, empathy, and patience. Each day with Rio reinforces the importance of routine and the commitment required to care for another living being, particularly one with special needs like his. His condition has taught me to be more attentive and compassionate, not just towards him but in my interactions with others as well.

Moreover, Rio has shown me the beauty of living in the moment. Despite his age and his health challenges, he approaches each day with enthusiasm and joy, reminding me to cherish the simple things in life. His resilience and cheerfulness inspire me to face my own challenges with a positive outlook. In many ways, Rio has shaped who I am today, making me a more caring, patient, and empathetic person. He's not just a pet; he's my teacher and my inspiration.

Can you tell us about a particularly memorable or funny moment you've had with your dog during one of your photo shoots or adventures?

Negovetic: Our account may be just over two months old, but Rio has been an integral part of our family for 12 years, joining us on countless adventures. One particularly memorable event—if you can call it that—occurred during a ski holiday in a picturesque Italian village.

Rio goes everywhere with us, and skiing trips are no exception. He's always been a model of good behavior, never causing any trouble. Typically, after a morning walk, we would head out to ski and return to our apartment in the afternoon. However, one day we returned to a rather unexpected surprise. It appeared that Rio had eaten something disagreeable the day before, which led to a severe case of diarrhea. The mess was extensive, more than you could imagine throughout the apartment.

You should have seen his excitement when we finally got back and he could rush outside—the poor thing never normally does his business indoors! You can only imagine our expressions upon discovering the state of the apartment. It’s not the kind of story you typically share, but it certainly is unforgettable. Of course, we thoroughly cleaned the apartment until it was spotless, and Rio was put on a strict diet for the rest of the ski trip to prevent any further incidents. :)

What is your favorite thing about being a dog influencer?

Negovetic: My favorite part of being a dog influencer is that it combines two of my greatest passions—dogs and writing. Through my content about my dog, I get to express myself in ways that can be difficult in everyday interactions. This experience has been incredibly affirming, helping me validate my personal values and boosting my self-confidence.

Plus, being part of a community that loves animals, especially dogs, is truly wonderful. I genuinely believe that people who love animals are great people. There's something special about the energy and kindness in our community, and it’s hard not to feel connected to someone who shares this love for animals.

Lastly, what's next for you and your dog on social media? Any exciting plans or projects in the works?

Negovetic: We have many exciting plans for the future, but my primary goal remains to spread positivity and love through our posts. One of my key missions is to share insights on keeping senior dogs like Rio active and engaged. I believe that maintaining an active lifestyle is crucial for the health and happiness of older dogs.

Additionally, I'm passionate about raising awareness of conditions like pododermatitis, which took years to diagnose in Rio. Helping even one person recognize these symptoms in their dog earlier would mean the world to me. I'm also in discussions with a company specializing in products for dogs with allergies. I've been impressed with their offerings and am hopeful about becoming an ambassador for their brand, which would further my ability to support dogs and owners dealing with health issues.

Lastly, showcasing the stunning beauty of Croatia through Rio's adventures continues to be an important part of our journey. It allows me to share not only the joy and challenges of living with a senior dog but also the breathtaking landscapes and rich culture of our country.