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Adventures in Dog Exploitation- First World Edition

Thanks to social media, we now can watch lots of videos of cute dogs and cats doing incredibly funny things.

But some of those videos make me cringe.

Spider dog, Warsaw (photo found everywhere on the internet)

Spider dog, Warsaw (photo found everywhere on the internet)

Let’s review the latest craze- the videos of a dog in a spider costume scaring people. I am hoping those are staged, because I keep thinking it will only be a matter of time before somebody grabs a weapon (or pulls out a firearm) and causes irreparable harm to that dog.

I mean, really? Did NOBODY else think of that?

The guy that filmed this hails from Warsaw, and he told BBC News about, “his mission to change Polish culture, his obsession with taunting the Polish police and just how far he will go for an adrenaline rush.”

NOW do you see why I might be worried?

This phenomenon of cute animal social media videos has helped fuel the “dog in every commercial” craze in advertising. If you regularly visit this blog, then you know that’s one thing that I’m not particularly happy about.

Not that I’m opposed to seeing dogs on TV, mind you. But it chaps my butt to see dogs strategically placed in commercials about products or services that have nothing to do with dogs. It’s all to get you to buy in to the sales pitch.

Take, for instance, the ads for a cholesterol-lowering medication that includes a cute little Boston Terrier in a bowling alley that just….. sits there.

The poor dog does not look happy. (photo: sportsstudio.net)

The poor dog does not look happy. (photo: sportsstudio.net)

Why is the dog in a bowling alley? Maybe that one dog is doing OK because he’s really in front of a green screen. But a dog may not do so well in a place with lots of loud noises, like a bowling alley. And have you seen any human interaction with that Boston Terrier? I haven’t.

To be sure, this dog is not there to promote responsible pet care. The dog distracts you so you don’t think about all those possible side effects the voice-over is telling you about. Instead you’re thinking warm fuzzy thoughts.

My stance is that animals should be treated with dignity and respect. What’s going on in these two cases is exploitation for human entertainment and financial gain, with no forethought to what could happen to the animals, or other animals put in similar situations.

Party-pooper? Yeah, I get that a lot. But somebody has to speak up and say this isn’t funny. May as well be me. 



By the way…… last week I told you about the dog food wars, and I mentioned Hill’s Pet Nutrition’s blogger campaign to shame BlueBuffalo.

What’s the latest? Yesterday that National Advertising Division (NAD) sent out a press release stating NAD had ruled that Hill’s, ” violated the procedures that govern the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation by seeking to use for promotional purposes decisions reached by the NAD and the National Advertising Review Board (NARB).” (Source: NAD press release)

Gee, this is like a telenovela! What will happen next?

About Jen and the Furries

Hello and welcome. I’m a 50 something woman who’s probably awake when she should be sleeping. Oh, and there are animals, because who doesn’t have pets?


45 thoughts on “Adventures in Dog Exploitation- First World Edition

  1. it’s true they aren’t clowns who have to act silly to promote an insurance or a laundry detergent :o(

    Posted by easyweimaraner | September 17, 2014, 5:26 AM
  2. Absolutely agree…

    Posted by awordfromsolo | September 17, 2014, 5:29 AM
  3. I agree 🙂

    Posted by willowdot21 | September 17, 2014, 7:28 AM
  4. I have seen that spider dog thing, and your absolutely right! If this isn’t staged, I wouldn’t put it past someone to kick the dog or do much worse in a fear reaction.
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

    Posted by Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady | September 17, 2014, 8:01 AM
  5. Not to mention that the Boston Terrier’s ad is for a Statin drug – Crestor. Statins are now the #1 selling family of drugs. They cause brain damage, memory loss, dementia, liver failure, kidney failure, raise blood sugar, destroy muscle tissue and cause neuropathy. They are prescribed for life, as they cure no disease. High cholesterol is a coincident condition that has not been proven causal in arterial plaque disease.

    Posted by bitcodavid | September 17, 2014, 8:10 AM
    • Totally agree…10 years of Lipitor courtesy of Pfizer caused me muscle breakdown and Fibromyalgia…and how convenient the same company sells the drugs for Fibro….saw the Crestor sign and no winder the dog is unhappy..

      Posted by fozziemum | September 17, 2014, 8:18 AM
    • And yet people take it because they think they need it because the ads told them they did.

      Posted by rumpydog | September 17, 2014, 9:11 AM
      • And because their doctors – lobbied by the pharmaceutical companies – tell them they’re sick, when they’re really not. I’ve been fighting the statin fight with my endocrinologist for 8 years now. My heart pounds in my chest, like a 19th century steam engine, and my arteries flow like the Nile.

        Posted by bitcodavid | September 17, 2014, 10:07 AM
      • Oh… and Jack’s as healthy as a 50lb. bull, as well. 🙂

        Posted by bitcodavid | September 17, 2014, 10:09 AM
      • Ads for all prescription drugs should be banned. It’s just marketing – not for your well being.
        Now the regulations that tried to have the bad stuff about each drug in the commercials listed – even in tiny/fast lettering is in danger of being watered down because they say “nobody reads that stuff anyway – and they can always go on line and read it there.” Who’s side are they on…not the general public.
        You have to really insist with docs about statins – there are alternatives including diet, exercise, weight, and having a dog – or if they really look at the labs, the “good” numbers may be high enough that the bad ones don’t matter.
        Patients have to be informed advocates for themselves – or have someone fill that role.

        Posted by philosophermouseofthehedge | September 17, 2014, 4:02 PM
  6. This damn spider dog thing is disgusting….why would you use an animal to cause fear..by portraying another animal that causes fear…animals and sexualized women…selling products ..go figure…

    Posted by fozziemum | September 17, 2014, 8:20 AM
    • I hear ya. What bothers me most is more people aren’t upset by that.

      Posted by rumpydog | September 17, 2014, 9:11 AM
      • I know..how is ths for a real classic idiot act..a Pizza Hut in our state (franchise so not the companies idea) decided that with four pizzas you got a voucher for a small pet at a pet shop they had a deal with..got stopped quick smart when social media got right into them…the whole thing was slammed and the big wigs had to back peddle real fast….urghhhhhhhhhhh

        Posted by fozziemum | September 17, 2014, 9:21 AM
      • WHAT? Are you kidding me? Thank goodness for public outcry!

        Posted by rumpydog | September 18, 2014, 5:26 AM
  7. You know it’s funny I was thinking the same thing about that “spider” dog video. I thought I hope this is all staged or else someone might take a shovel and whack the poor dog with it. Completely agree with you.

    Posted by edithlevyphotography | September 17, 2014, 8:41 AM
  8. You, know I never noticed the dog in the Crestor commercials… but then again I really don’t pay much attention to the TV when its on, it’s usually just for background noise while I’m working or to give the dogs the feeling that someone is home whenI know I’ll be gone longer than usual (still less than eight hours but longer than a quick trip to the store).

    Posted by Victoria Carter | September 17, 2014, 8:47 AM
  9. I’m glad I’m not the only one creeped out by dressing a dog by a spider. I hated the idea so much I didn’t click to learn more. But now I’m horrified that it was some guy’s smart idea to taunt the police.

    In truth, I find the ads appalling but not surprising. I don’t expect more from advertisers. Most of my bile on YouTube is brought up by dog “lovers” who record their dogs being unhappy for their own amusement.

    Posted by somethingwagging | September 17, 2014, 8:48 AM
  10. We completely agree with you. Dogs’ natural dignity and integrity should always be respected; they should not be dressed up for the amusement (or worse) of others. Well said, you!

    Posted by mrpipponders | September 17, 2014, 12:02 PM
  11. I am absolutely with you on this. I saw the picture of the dog in the spider costume and felt sick. Why dress up animals? So many of these ‘cute’ pictures are not of cats and dogs enjoying themselves, but feeling stressed.

    Posted by Isobel | September 17, 2014, 12:21 PM
  12. I hate that spider thing. I don’t like mean tricks. And it puts the dog at risk.

    Posted by philosophermouseofthehedge | September 17, 2014, 4:03 PM
  13. One BIG thing you forgot to touch on is that every time a certain breed appears in a famous commercial or tv show/movie then there is an influx of those dogs being in high demand & then dumped. As a rescuer I cringe every time I see a dog or any animal in a commercial or movie because I KNOW what’s going to be showing up on my doorstep in droves in about 4 to 7 months down the road 😦

    Posted by animallawnewsandabuse | September 17, 2014, 8:04 PM
  14. I thought the same thing when I saw that spider dog video.

    Posted by meowmeowmans | September 17, 2014, 10:52 PM
  15. That spider costume dog looks strange….in fact..scary….poor dog…. 😦

    Posted by eripanwkevin | September 18, 2014, 9:24 AM
  16. Dogs should never be made to wear costumes. Sometimes I will pose with a hat on, but only because I get a treat a few seconds later. I bet that spider costume is really uncomfortable. By the way Rumpy, those treats that you sent to me showed up. Yummy! I’m posting about them tomorrow.

    Posted by Bongo | September 18, 2014, 11:33 PM
  17. Sometimes I don’t think about what it might have taken to make some of these videos or commercials. Thanks, Rumpy! I’ll pay more attention now.

    Posted by Nature by Dawn | September 19, 2014, 1:52 PM

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