When YouTube user Brittany Boll posted the following video of her dog howling along to every child in America’s favorite song, “Let It Go,” surely she thought it would go down as just another cute pet video. Maybe, if she was lucky, it would go viral. But now her innocent video is gaining notoriety for another reason: some are calling her out for animal abuse.
“It hurts its ears you morons” and “Remove this video at once and put your dog into a better home as you clearly can not take care of it and are a horrible keeper” are just a few of the negative comments criticizing the once-innocent video. Users, moderators, and trolls alike are calling out the video for being far from cute, stating that dogs howl as a reaction to loud or high-pithced sounds that annoy them. But is there any truth behind these claims?
Admittedly, some of these harsh comments are pure sarcasm, but there are still many commenters who are generally concerned for the dog and/or angry at the owners. While it’s true that dogs may howl or bark to express pain or discomfort, experts agree that, more often than not, dogs howl due to instinct or simply to communicate.
According to this page on the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)’s website, “[d]ogs howl to attract attention, to make contact with others and to announce their presence.” Although excessive howling may have to do with anxiety, fear, or pain, most dogs howl as a learned behavior in order to gain a reaction from its owners or other pets. To put it plainly, if Brittany Boll and her dog listen to “Let It Go” enough, and if Fido learns that his howling makes his owners laugh, he’s most likely to repeat that behavior when he hears the catchy song.
Dogs howl to attract attention, to make contact with others and to announce their presence.
That being said, it is pretty uncanny that the mutt immediately loses attention once his owners switch back to “Boom Clap.” Sorry Charli XCX! And who knows? Maybe that puppy just really enjoys Frozen. Watch the video below and decide for yourself!
(Fun fact of the day: when humans, dogs, or other animals have 2 different-colored eyes, the condition is called heterochromia iridum. Now go impress your friends!)
On the surface this looks like another cute pet video, but is there more than meets the eye (or ear)? Watch the video and give your opinion here!