Tyler Hynes’ Dog Steals the Show During Hilarious Facebook Live

Tyler Hynes

Heavy/Hallmark Tyler Hynes with is dog, Rusty James

When Rhiannon Fish, Tyler Hynes’ co-star in the upcoming Hallmark Channel movie “A Picture of Her,” had to back out of appearing in a Facebook Live session to promote their new movie, Hynes decided to invite his little dog, Rusty James, to appear alongside him. But rather than curl up quietly on his pink fluffy dog bed, the pup became the main attraction of the online interview — yawning, licking his lips, exploring, and even tapping his dad on the shoulder multiple times.

In 2021, Hynes told Southern Living that Rusty James was his “purebred pandemic puppy,” whom he adopted during in 2020 at the height of the COVID pandemic.

“It’s something I wanted to do for a while and I just never had the time to sort of focus on it and do it right, and the opportunity hadn’t presented itself,” he said. “My family had always adopted a lot of puppies … so I started looking into that and when I finally had time to do it, it was during the pandemic. And yeah, I finally was able to give the right amount of time and focus and investment I wanted to give, bringing a new dog home.”

The actor’s diehard fans, who call themselves Hynies, love getting glimpses of the black Pomeranian on social media, including his third birthday dinner last week complete with a pup-sized party hat. Hynes posted a highlight reel hours after the Facebook Live on March 22, 2023, and said he was loving all the reactions and memes already popping up in response to his pup stealing the show.

Hynes also heaped praise on Fish, calling her a “legend and a princess,” and asked viewers to keep her in their thoughts, without providing specific details on what kept her from participating. The actress later gave fans a health update, revealing that she was experiencing intense pain due to medical treatments she’s been undergoing.

Fans Go Wild For Tyler Hynes’ Special Guest, Dog Rusty James

Hallmark often hosts Facebook Live sessions with its stars before a movie premiere, with multiple co-stars appearing together virtually. But during the 17-minute Facebook Live with Hynes, he was the only one on-camera — save for his canine companion — to answer written questions about the movie provided by Hallmark staffers.

Hynes dealt with the awkwardness by inserting plenty of self-deprecating humor, telling fans he knew it was “disappointing” and a “letdown” that it was just him and Rusty James. When asked to describe the “meet-cute” in the movie — the moment his and Fish’s characters meet in an adorable way — he said they connect at a dog park.

Pointing to Rusty James, who was sitting in his dog bed perched on a dresser behind Hynes, he said, “Our meet-cute involves some co-stars that don’t look that dissimilar to the gentleman to my right who was kind enough to join me so I didn’t have to go this alone.”

“My co-host today is Rusty James,” he said, turning to the pup. “How are you, sir? Okay back there? Okay. He’s a little bit high, as he’s on the dresser, which is abnormal for him. This is not usually where he hangs out. But for our purposes, that’s where he is.”

Clearly not quite comfortable with his new spot, the pup spent the first few minutes of the Facebook Live trying to get comfortable as Hynes answered questions. But he had to periodically pause to check on the dog, who started walking along the dresser in the background and even adorably tapping Hynes on the shoulder with his paw.

At one point, Hynes stopped mid-sentence to say, “Rusty, what’s going on back there? What are you doing? What’s happening?”

“Pardon me,” he sweetly said to his viewers, then turned back to Rusty. “You good, pal? Guys, he’s playing a heights game that I don’t know if I’m comfortable with.”

As Rusty settled back into his dog bed momentarily, Hynes said, “Oh, you good? Okay. Crisis averted.”

But it wasn’t long before Rusty was restless again, prompting Hynes to finally lift him onto the floor, where he could eat his “dental stick.” Even though the pup was out of the shot for the rest of the Facebook Live, it was clear he was distracting Hynes, who would occasionally look off to the side to see what he was up to, and later indicated that Rusty was “burning a hole in my face,” staring him down because he needed to go outside.

Hynes’ fans and friends got a kick out of the whole ordeal, posting screenshots on social media and flooding the comment sections of Hynes’ Facebook Live and Instagram post with their love for Rusty James.

Hallmark actress Kimberley Sustad wrote, “How is he not in one of our movies? That ends today. ❤️🔥”

One fan commented, “I love to hear you talk to him. RJ all day every day 🐕 🤗❤️”

“Sorry Tyler, Rusty James definitely stole the show,” another fan wrote, “and he made sure you were aware of it. Tap…tapping on your shoulder ;) Both you guys nailed FB Live!”

Someone added, “Rusty is and will always be your side kick!! He knows he is loved by everybody and sometime you will have to take a back seat to him !! We love you both!!💞🫶🏻”

Tyler Hynes Encourages Fans To Send Their ‘Love and Support’ to Co-Star Rhiannon Fish

Tyler Hynes and Rhiannon Fish

HallmarkTyler Hynes and Rhiannon Fish in “A Picture of Her”

Hynes, 36, has made it clear in recent interviews how much he loved filming “A Picture of Her” with Fish, 32. During his Facebook Live, he called her a “an exceptional human being and a truly talented artist.”

“There’s something very present about (Rhiannon),” he recently told Us Weekly. There was never a moment where I was looking at her and doing things in the scene where she wasn’t right there with me.”

At the beginning of the Facebook Live session, though, Hynes indicated that Fish was in need of some “love and support” without providing any further details.

“Rhiannon wishes she could have joined us, but she unfortunately is tied up in something she couldn’t get out of,” he said. “She will be sorely missed. She is a legend and a princess that I wish I had here with me. We’re wishing her all the best in what she’s doing. And I’m sure she’ll appreciate that fact because I know she could use a little bit of love and support right now.”

In recent days, Fish has been periodically chronicling her infertility journey in her Instagram Stories, sharing videos of herself administering shots into her abdomen. In one she shared on March 14, she wrote above the video, “Freezing my eggs like a bad bitch … Anyone out there who’s done this, you are my hero … this sh*t’s hard. On a positive note my tits are bigger than ever so that’s fun.”

According to Yale School of Medicine, egg freezing — also known as oocyte cryopreservation — “involves harvesting a woman’s eggs and freezing them so she can attempt pregnancy at a later date through in vitro fertilization (IVF).”

Hours after Hynes’ Facebook Live, Fish posted another video in her Instagram Stories, showing that she was horizontal on a couch, with tears in her eyes.

“I feel like I had been relatively transparent during my egg retrieval process,” she said to the camera with a shaky voice. “So in lieu of that, I wanted to keep being transparent. I don’t know who says this is easy. I am in … I’m in so much pain. And I know everybody’s experiences are different but, like, I had been told, ‘You know, you still should be able to work throughout.’ There’s no way I could be working.”

After a heavy sigh, she ended the video by saying, “So, just, ow.”

“A Picture of Her” premieres on Hallmark Channel on March 25 at 8 p.m. Eastern time.

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