Baltimore-based rapper and pet lover DDm, or Dapper Dan Midas, released a fun video for “That’s my Dog,” celebrating pet adoptions, rescues, and ownership among Black, indigenous, and people of color. (see video below)
🐶 DDm Loves Dog and Cats 😻
Like many of us, DDm is a dog lover who also loves cats. Below, you can see his beloved cat, Taco Bell, who he misses.
“Taco Bell was just so chill. He kept me company, we would have conversations, and we’d sit and watch Marvel films. It was like having a roommate almost, to a certain degree,” he told TODAY. “I miss him so much.”
The catchy song is part of a team effort with Baltimore nonprofit Companions and Animals for Reform and Equity (CARE). Recently, DDm wrote the song when CARE founder and CEO James Evans suggested creating a video together.
“I want people to think of pet ownership as being as diverse and complex as pets themselves,” Evans said. “There is a pet out there for everyone. … What we want to focus on is love.”
Previously, CARE helped Sterling’ Trap King’ Davis with his trap, neuter, release (TNR) efforts for cats in Atlanta and elsewhere.
In the video, DDm sings holding a Chihuahua named Mellow with lyrics like:
“That’s my best friend … That’s my dog … He gon always hold me down … That’s my dog.”
When you watch the video, you’ll also catch a glimpse of the Trap King’s moves!
Celebrating Pets and Rescue Efforts
By creating the video, DDm and CARE hope to help uplift everyone who loves pets. Thus, DDm wanted the song to be positive first and foremost.
“I’m a pet owner, I’m very sensitive and very much an advocate for pet care and pet wellness and just pet owners all around,” DDm told TODAY. “But I didn’t want to make a song about pet ownership that was corny and sad and depressing…I wanted to make something that was a little bit more positive, especially in these times, and uplifting for people who are champions of pet advocacy and ownership.”
Maybe, people will even sing along with the pets?
“Maybe they’ll sing it to their dog — who knows?”
In addition, the video may also encourage pet adoptions, particularly as the pandemic has led to a rise in animals surrendered to shelters.
“I also hope it shows that Black people and people of color care about their pets. We’re not out here dogfighting and all of those stigmas that kind of get thrown around,” he said. “I hope it shows that Black people take care of their pets, and they love their pets just like everybody else.”
Dispelling the Stereotypes
Along with having fun, DDm and CARE hope to help dispel stereotypes about pet lovers who are black and people of color. Many times, people of color face discrimination and bias in the predominantly white animal welfare industry.
For example, according to Yahoo:
“Black people trying to adopt pets can face extra scrutiny and might find their adoption applications rejected if they live in an underserved community. Even people simply hoping to volunteer can face distrust.”‘
CARE and the ‘Human and Animal Well-Being Field’
Today, as many as 90% of U.S. veterinarians identify as white even though there’s a shortage of vets.
Unfortunately, this discrimination is something that Evans has experienced first-hand. Recently, his family wanted to adopt a dog; rescue organizations “casually rejected” him over a dozen times.
“It’s a really frustrating thing to be steeped in how it feels to be casually rejected for no reason, or not be called back at all,” he said.
Finally, a colleague from the Humane Society helped him provide a forever home for a puppy rescued from a puppy mill. Now, Evans and his children have welcomed Rocky, an Akita puppy, into their family.
Before the pandemic began in 2020, Evans started CARE to help change all that. Through CARE, he hopes to help diversify what he likes to call the “human and animal well-being field,” a wonderful way to look at animal welfare. Even better, the work helps support a fund for African American veterinary students.
Below, enjoy the great video by CARE Centers and DDm:
Featured images: screenshots via YouTube