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You’ll Probably Be Disappointed by Your Dog’s Reaction to Your “Fake Fainting”

Posted September 17, 2015 in A Vet's Life

Woman fainted while dog looks on

[Editor's Note: We are not encouraging or endorsing trying this and, if you do, DO NOT do it in a place where your dog is free to wander off, get lost or end up in traffic.]

We’d all like to believe our dogs would act heroically when faced with danger. Dashing to retrieve rescue for an injured owner, dragging a helpless child from a burning building or Dialing 911 for a collapsed companion—that sort of stuff.

Well, as seen on BarkPost™ and Buzzfeed, some pet parents are testing their pet’s “superdog” status and videoing the results. Turns out not every dog can channel their inner Lassie and save the day. In fact, most seem pretty perplexed by the whole thing.

The setup
Before I go any further, I want to make it clear that I don’t recommend nor advise what these wanna-be-internet-famous folks are doing. In fact, I think it can be downright dangerous. Here’s the setup: A person is out walking their dog on a leash and pretends to collapse. Video rolls to share how the dog responds when the guardian fake-falls to the ground, feigning fainting. (Say that five times fast.) So how’d the dogs do? Underdog to the rescue?

The results
Not so much. Most of the dogs simply ignored the guardian and continued trekking. One kept walking until you couldn’t see it, and another took the opportunity to hightail it elsewhere. Not a single dog poked, prodded, licked, sniffed or snuggled their guardian. Only one made any attempt to even glance back at their blacked-out buddy. Disappointed doesn’t do it justice.

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Ernie has more than 20 years of experience in the veterinary industry and is a well-known veterinarian, media personality and author. He is also a founding member of IDEXX’s Pet Health Network team.

Opinions expressed are those of the writer:

The opinions and views expressed in this post are those of the author's and do not necessarily represent the beliefs, policies or positions of all veterinarians, Pet Health Network, IDEXX Laboratories, Inc. or its affiliates and partner companies.