|Photo courtesy of Hannah Stonehouse Hudson.|
|Hannah Stonehouse Hudson's photo of John Unger and his dog Schoep went viral this week.|
When Wisconsin photographer Hannah Stonehouse Hudson
took a photo of her friend John Unger with his 19-year-old dog Schoep in Lake Superior last week, she had no idea that it would go viral on Facebook and attract a ton of media attention.
The photo has been viewed more than 2 million times on Facebook, and shared more than 100,000 times, according to MPR
When we caught up with Hudson yesterday, she apologized for sounding out of breath. "I'm sorry, I'm really caffeinated," she said, laughing. "It's been crazy with all the attention this has been getting."
Hudson said that Unger adopted Schoep, named for a brand of ice cream, when he was only 8 months old. Schoep is now 19, and very arthritic. Only this summer, Schoep has been allowing Unger to take him into the lake, according to Hudson.
"Because the dog is arthritic, the buoyancy of the water makes him feel so much better," Hudson said. "He obviously trusts John so much that he fell asleep in his arms."
Hudson said that Unger is "an extremely kind soul," which she believes shines through in the photo. "Women have been asking about him, if he's single," she said, laughing again.
To Hudson, however, what makes the photo compelling goes beyond the beauty of her friend -- or his dog. "It's so simplistic that people can attach their own meaning."