With more than 1,500 Instagram followers, Humphrey (@mr_humphreythedog) may be Toluca Lake’s leading canine influencer. His outgoing personality, expressive face and striking appearance — he’s a Brussels griffon, the breed said to have inspired the creation of the Ewoks in Return of the Jedi — make him a natural at social media.
“At first, Instagram was just a way for us to document all of his adventures in an organized place,” Humphrey’s human companion, Alexander George, explains. “Soon the page became bigger than we could have imagined — everywhere Humphrey goes now, he’s recognized. We didn’t really do anything to promote him; we just always believed Humphrey would be a star, not for his Instagram but for his real-life authenticity.”
Humphrey’s posts aren’t just cute puppy pics; they’re also a community chronicle, showcasing the people, places and character of the neighborhood he’s lived in since the age of 3 months. “Humphrey loves everything about Toluca Lake,” George says. “He loves visiting all of his two- and four-legged friends and picking up treats along the way at all of the local businesses. On his morning Coffee Bean trips, the wonderful regulars also bring him treats! On Fridays, he loves checking out all of the classic roadsters and chatting with the regulars at Bob’s Big Boy. Humphrey also loves his long, peaceful strolls through the neighborhood rose gardens at sunset with his sassy sister Bridgette, a rescue Saint Bernard. But what he loves most about Toluca Lake is the strong sense of community. There is nothing better than to go out and know there’s always going to be a friendly face to see — and, of course, a treat. His Instagram is essentially a glimpse into his loving, magical universe that we are calling ‘HumphreyTown,’ which exists inside the Toluca Lake bubble.”
That HumphreyTown magic has led to many special opportunities, including winning a year’s supply of Halo Top ice cream, being invited to be the trolley conductor at the Grove and getting to meet Chewbacca at a red-carpet event. But Humphrey hasn’t let fame go to his head and generously shares the spotlight, according to George: “Instagram is a wonderful tool for Humphrey to help give a voice to some of the wonderfully kind animals and people he meets. (The only thing he dislikes is the angry squirrel in the backyard who taunts him every morning.) Humphrey is all about unconditional love, and he encourages others to follow their hearts and have fun!”