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The Singapore Dog Lifestyle Blog

Category: Behaviour (Page 1 of 12)

“A Dog’s Purpose” movie investigation results

Update: As you may have seen from various new sources, results from the investigation of a panicky dog being pushed into churning water on the film set of “A Dog’s Purpose” are out.

An independent animal-cruelty expert found that preventative safety measures were in place to protect the dog, Hercules, American Humane said…

“The decisions by the individual or individuals who captured and deliberately edited the footage, and then waited longer than 15 months to release the manipulated video only days before the movie’s premiere, raise serious questions about their motives and ethics,” American Humane said Friday.

The video was deliberately edited for the purpose of misleading the public and stoking outrage. In fact, the two scenes shown in the edited video were filmed at different times,” the group said in reporting the findings.

Taking a step back from the motives and ethics of the the people who released the video, am I less horrified now that I learn that preventative safety measures were in place?

For me, all these news does not take away from the immediate visceral horror of seeing the dog being pushed into the water, despite his obvious signals to the handler of his unwillingness and eventual panic. And this is at the beginning part of the video, I hadn’t even watched part 2 which is filmed at a different time where the dog’s head is submerged in the water.

Over at Buzzfeed, the report also says, “Hercules, the German shepherd, was “selected for his love of the water, and had been professionally trained and conditioned for the water scenes over the course of six weeks using positive training techniques,” according to the report.”

Excuse me, which part of being pushed to go into the water when clearly terrfied is positive? Positive training is force-free. I cannot stand behind the ethics and motivations of those who claim to be positive but the eventual result is, it seems the dog was still forced into the water in at least one instance…

I much more appreciate the response from the film’s producer Gavin Polone in this Jan 23 article.

As with the TMZ video that you saw, two things were evident:

1) the dog handler tries to force the dog, for 35 to 40 seconds, into the water when, clearly, he didn’t want to go in; and

2) in a separate take filmed sometime later, the dog did go into the water, on his own, and, at the end, his head is submerged for about 4 seconds.

These two things are absolutely INEXCUSABLE and should NEVER have happened.

The dog trainer should have stopped trying to get the dog to go in the water as soon as the dog seemed uncomfortable, and the trainers should have had support under the dog as soon as he came to the side of the pool and/or had less turbulence in the water so he never would have gone under.

– Polone also gives more description of how the dog is usually water-loving, and the circumstances behind his reluctance here.


I agree with Polone, movie makers need to make sure they hire the right handlers, trainers and safety experts who will make sure that the dog’s physical and mental health are safe-gaurded.

Let’s hope future movies about dogs will have greater consideration of these, then nobody will have any negative footage to share at a delayed date.


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Tried and Tested Tips to help your Thunder-Phobic Dog

If your dog is restless when it looks like rain, starts to salivate and tremble, has uncontrolled bowel movement during thunderstorms, he or she may have thunderstorm phobia.

Thunder phobia is not something that can be cured overnight. But these steps have helped to keep Donna stable and calm during thunderstorms when we are at home. So I hope it will help your dog too.

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Something smells interesting

dog finds dead lizardShe spent a long time sniffing that. :P
Happy National Day! :) Check out last year’s post on Patriotic Singapore Dogs! ;)

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[Video] Kanon the Japanese Spitz Dog Birthday Gathering!

japanese spitz dog group photoWe were excited to attend Kanon’s 2nd Birthday Party because Donna loves to play with Kanon! :) Donna was also excited to meet all these other pups, some of whom she has met before, and some she hasn’t. Go check out the fun she had in the video!

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Digging, digging, digging…

In last Saturday’s post, I was trying to teach Junior to like his carrier. His new hobby is digging in the bag. Haha!

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Recall Runway – Funniest Dog Party Game Ever! :P

The Barkery SingaporeOne of the highlights of the Dogs of Instagram Christmas Party was definitely the Recall Runway, inspired by this video.

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Videos of Donna meeting other dogs

This is Donna. Without ears. LOL. Keeping to her mat while at Sembawang Dog Run.

She obviously is not very good at keeping her entire self on the mat. :P

So anyway, I did say before didn’t I, that Donna naturally likes to approach strange, unfamiliar dogs and playbow them within a couple seconds of meeting.

Here’s exhibit #1 – where she meets a dashing mix-breed dog with cute tufty ears and a head bigger than hers.

And exhibit #2 – Donna was at first apprehensive upon entering the dog run (not in video) because Jacko the mixed white dog was racing over to meet the new dogs entering. But after a while, as you’ll see in this video, it’s Donna who was the more pushy one, pestering Jacko to play with her.

Donna dog playing with Rudolph chihuahua

I had this video taken of Donna’s play behaviour with Rudolph the Chihuahua when we visited Dog Dot Cafe here.

It’s the first time for me seeing Donna playing with a chihuahua. :) It was really fun for me.

If I don’t remember wrongly, the chihuahua is 2-years-old versus Donna’s 5 years. Guess age and size doesn’t matter when you have fun. :)


See reviews of Dog Dot and more Pet Cafes in Singapore here


Whaddya mean I’m here to therapise people…

Donna passed the temperament test at Therapy Dogs Singapore more than a month back but the tardy, useless humans only managed to take her to her first therapy session yesterday!

It was there that the human realised there was so much to learn about managing patients more than managing the dog!

But you know what, Donna says,

No sweat! I’m just gonna lie here and hope the patients know they are supposed to feed me treats when I’m Relaxing. – –

This is a home picture. But you know what, the dog really did that at the home we went to. Lie on the small platform stage where we were sitting on with the patient, and did Relax just like we were at home and she’s trying to wheedle a treat out of me! Haha!

*Relax is when she is supposed to lie calmly on the  floor or with her head in my lap and not move.

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