• Jill Biden and their dogs, Major and Champ, appeared in an ad that aired during Puppy Bowl XVII Sunday
  • Biden encouraged Americans to continue wearing masks even when they are out walking their dog
  • She said it is the pet owners' responsibility to keep themselves healthy for their pets who give them "unconditional love"

Jill Biden has called on Americans to keep wearing face masks to fight COVID-19 in a new public service announcement, garnering praise from social media users.

In the ad, which aired Sunday during Puppy Bowl XVII, the first lady encouraged those with pets to wear a mask when they're out walking their dogs. Her family's German shepherds, Major and Champ, also made a special appearance in the PSA.

"For a lot of us during this pandemic, our pets have been such a source of joy and comfort. And maybe a barker too on a video conference. The unconditional love for a dog is one of the most beautiful things on earth and we owe it to them to keep ourselves healthy. So, please keep wearing your masks even when you are out walking your dog," she said, before looking at her two dogs and asking, "Right guys?"

Biden's message received a positive response from netizens, who noted that many opt not to wear a face-covering when they walk their dogs in their neighborhoods.

"Thanks for this! I have to cross the street a lot while walking my dogs because no one is masked up," one Twitter user commented.

"This is what First Ladies do. Use their platform for good. Thank you!" another wrote.

"Thank you, Dr. Biden. My family thinks I'm ridiculous for wearing a mask to walk their dog (he's my sister's, I live in their basement), but so often people walk up and disregard distance to pet him and start chatting away. I'd rather be overly cautious than get COVID-19," a third user added.

"I feel kinda foolish out there alone with my dog wearing a mask BUT here comes a group of college kids running for track. Now I don't feel so foolish but thankful I wore it. love, to you , Joe, Champ & Major," @anne_hotchkiss wrote.

"Thank you, Dr. Biden. It is such a relief having compassionate, intelligent and humane people now inhabiting the White House," another added.

But a few didn't agree with Biden, claiming masks aren't necessary for outdoor activities where a person is alone and can easily follow social distancing protocol.

"Survivor" star and animal lover Anna Khait commented, "Ummm... NO thanks."

Another user wrote, "I'm very pro-mask, pro-dogs, and pro-Jill Biden, but this really seems like overkill. Being outside drastically reduces chances of transmission, and it should be very easy to stay distanced from people. This kind of overkill might do more harm than good."

Puppy Bowl XVII aired on Animal Planet a few hours before the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs squared off in Super Bowl LV Sunday at 6:30 p.m. EST.

Jill Biden speaks at a presidential campaign event for her husband Joe Biden on September 30, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio
Jill Biden speaks at a presidential campaign event for her husband Joe Biden on September 30, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio AFP / ROBERTO SCHMIDT