If you were on social media longer than five minutes this past week, you may have seen numerous viral videos of a clothed dog with a backpack walking and hopping around a city. But before you hit that “like,” “love,” or “ha-ha” button, please realize that this dog could have been abused for these fleeting moments of entertainment.
In addition to taking social media by storm, the dog in the video is reportedly a viral hit on the Chinese video app Huoshan Video. Numerous accounts feature this brown poodle in a variety of costumes, most of which also show the animal standing upright.
Many people were disgusted by this buffoonery and potential animal abuse, leaving comments and tweeting their disapproval. Others began sharing videos that reveal how dogs are beaten in order to force them to stand on their hind legs for long periods of time.
Some concerned viewers brought up a story of a poodle—with a striking resemblance to the dog in these recent viral videos—who was filmed being abused to perform the same dumb trick.
Animals are not ours to use for entertainment. Period.
Just as with elephants who are beaten with bullhooks, tigers who are whipped in the face, and bears who are chained by their necks to force them to stand upright, animals perform tricks only because of human involvement—and many times that means physical violence and psychological torment were used.
What You Can Do
Don’t wait until the next viral hit to stand up for animals forced to perform silly, confusing tricks. Right now, there are animals who need your help.