Interview with ‘Scandal’ star Scott Foley on the ‘#iHeartMyDog’ campaign

Interview+with+%27Scandal%27+star+Scott+Foley+on+the+%27%23iHeartMyDog%27+campaign

Jon Fisher, Contributing Writer

Last week, RMU Sentry Media was able to talk with Scott Foley, Scandal actor, about a new social media campaign that’s going viral, the “#iHeartMyDog” campaign.

Q: The “#iHeartMyDog” campaign, tell me how this got started and what it means to you to do something so profound on the dog-lovers community.

A: “I’ve always been a dog-lover and have had dogs all my life. Now having children, I think it’s really important to raise them around dogs. We recently, about eight months ago, rescued, after losing another one, named Frankie. Frankie’s been with us for about eight months.”

“I was contacted by Merial, who makes Heartgard Plus, a heartworm medication for dogs. They’re beef, chewable for dogs. Now, during the summer months, mosquitos are around and they’re the ones that carry the heartworm disease. We’ve teamed up for this, ‘#iHeartMyDog’ campaign.”

“Basically, I spend a day making a video; a love-letter to my dog Frankie. I’m hoping other people do the same; either make a video about their dog by telling us a little about them, or they can take a picture with their dog, or even share the video I made. Then hashtag it on social media with ‘#iHeartMyDog.'”

“Every time they do this, and this is the great part about it, Merial will sponsor a dollar for ‘Canines Companions For Independence,’ which is a really fantastic non-profit organization that provides assistance dogs to people with disabilities.”

“It’s been around for 40 years and they’ve put almost 5,000 dogs with disable people and it’s a great way to raise some money for a great cause.”

Q: You spoke about something really profound and that’s social media. You saw the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge became so popular on social media, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. Talk about how social media will play a gigantic part in this campaign:

A: “I’m lucky to be on a television show that social media has affectedly profoundly. Scandal has really taken off in the Zeitgeist and I think a big part of that is social media. When I learned about this social media aspect of this campaign, I was really into it.”

“I’m a big ‘tweeter’ now because of the show. I have a bunch of followers and I think if we can get people on social media to share this. Like you said, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was such a big deal and it’s a way to get a message out, hopefully virally, that will do a lot of good.”

Q: Let’s get into the spring and summer months and why they are dangerous for dogs: 

A:Especially summer, with regards to dogs, a lot of dogs have an over-heating problem. You don’t want to get them too worn out. You want to make sure they have a lot of water. And spring and summer, like I said earlier, is when the mosquitos come out. Mosquitos carry the heartworm disease. Heartgard is such an easy way.”

“It’s easier to prevent a disease than to treat one. So, if you can take steps to do that, it’s so much better for your dogs. Dogs are such a big part of our family, they’re a big part of my family that you want to do everything you can to make sure they’re safe and taken care of.”

Q: I found a quote of yours recently, it said, “She’s the first one to greet me when I walk in the door.” That’s a great feeling, isn’t it?

A: “Yeah, you know? Dogs have this way and look, there are five people in my family, it didn’t have to be me. It could’ve been my wife. I hear it everyday from my wife like, ‘Why does the dog love you more?’ I don’t know if the dog loves me more, but they all choose their person and I happen to be the one that Frankie chose.”

“When were sitting on the couch watching TV at night, he’s on my lap. When we wake up in the morning, she follows me into the bathroom; couldn’t care less about my wife. I rub it in whenever I can. It’s an amazing thing they do and these animals bring so much into our lives.”

“Imagine being disabled and having the opportunity to have one of these animals that’s been trained specifically for you and for these tasks that you aren’t able to do. It’s really a fantastic bridge between yourself and the rest of society. The impact that these dogs that CCI trained  so well can have on the life of someone who is disabled.”

Q: In one word, how has Frankie changed not just your life, but your family’s life as well? 

A: “Joy.”

Q: Where can you share your, “#iHeartMyDog” video, or if they want to make their own? How do they do that? 

A: “They can go to www.iheartgardmydog.com to find my video. They can follow me on Twitter at @ScottKFoley. I’ve posted a link there. They can go there, or on any social media platform, be it Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. They can go show a picture of their dog, take a video of themselves talking about their dog. Post it on social media with the hashtag, ‘#iHeartMyDog.’ Anytime Merial sees that hashtag, they will sponsor one dollar to benefit Canines Companions for Independence.

[Image via zap2it.com]