Donnolo said Kormann primarily takes the photographs featured on the account, while she poses the dogs using a variety of toys and treats. She said the majority of the dogs are found by walking around campus with a camera, and they have yet to be turned down by owners when they ask to take their dog's picture. Owners can also set up appointments to have their dogs photographed for the Dogs of UNC Instagram page.
Christine Bennett, a Chapel Hill resident, set up an appointment for her beloved dog, Maple, and even made a Carolina blue tutu for her to wear to the photo shoot.
“I think it’s great to just hang out with your dogs and other people and just get involved in the community,” Bennett said. “We have so many beautiful places around here, it’s fun to explore them and take pictures that you’ll have forever of cool times in your dog’s life.”
Bennett said she also loves seeing all the pictures of other dogs posted by Dogs of UNC.
“Dogs are a way that people can connect, and I think that’s what Instagram is all about,” Bennett said.
Jessica Calland, a student at UNC, is a friend of the co-founders and a faithful follower of the Dogs of UNC account.
“A lot of times I’m busy studying or I’m not in the best mood because of classes,” Calland said. “It’s nice to go through Instagram and see adorable dogs.”
Calland said it made sense for Donnolo and Kormann to create Dogs of UNC because of their mutual love for dogs and photography.
“I know that there may be some rival accounts,” Calland said. “But I think that Dogs of UNC is still the best account in terms of the genuine love for photography and dogs.”
Donnolo said her favorite part of running the Instagram page is meeting all the dogs, but she also loves seeing how excited the owners get about seeing their dogs on Instagram. She said she plans to continue running the account with Kormann until she graduates.
“Everybody loves it. I’ve yet to have a negative response,” Donnolo said. “I’m sure there’s somebody out there that hates dogs – I wouldn’t want to meet them.”