Furry fibbers

Meet catfishing’s furry fake cousin: dogfishing

dogfishing, online dating, lying, dogs

Apparently men on dating apps have been posing with adorable dogs in their profile pics to appear more handsome and loving than they actually are. And the worst part: The dogs aren’t even theirs.

When you ask them about “their” dogs, they may get evasive or even ghost you if you press too hard.

Welcome to the modern online phenomenon of “dog fishing.”

Related: This man’s lawsuit against Grindr over a catfishing nightmare could change tech forever

Catfishing, of course, refers to people who pretend to be someone they’re not in order to get you to “bite” or chase them.

Dogfishing on the other hand is more literal. In this case, dogs are the bait, and it’s easy to see why: Dogs make great icebreakers for introductory conversation, and people generally assume that pet owners might make affectionate, protective lovers. Plus, a cute dog can make an okay-looking dude seem downright adorable.

But then, when you realize the dog in their photos are just bait, it can feel like a bit of a canine-con.

But dogfishing may not actually be a bad dating strategy: Once you actually score a date with someone, they may not care if the mutt is yours. Plus, it’s not like you have to lie and say it is — you can just say you were playing with a pal’s pooch because you love animals.

Also, if you hate mugging for the camera, dogs can sometimes bring out your natural warmth and smile, making you seem more genuine and playful than if you just stood in front of your mirror and took a hundred shirtless selfies.

Just make sure you don’t actually buy or adopt a dog just for a cute profile pic. Anyone who does that without regard for the animal’s lifelong care definitely belongs in the doghouse.