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Tag: anonymous

Secret Life of the Human Pups

secret-life-human-pups

All we can learn from dogs, and how, in many ways, we should strive to be more like them, are recurring themes on this website.

But, for the record, this is not what we mean.

A new documentary by Channel 4 in the UK takes a look at the “secretive” world of men who like to dress up as, and play the role of, dogs.

Around 10,000 people follow the pet play craze in the UK, according to “Secret Life of the Human Pups” — in which several members of this “secret” society dress up and strut before the cameras.

Apparently, it’s another one of those secret societies that — judging from some of its related websites, and the public competition it holds every year — really craves attention.

The documentary — sensationalistic as it is, albeit in a properly restrained British kind of way — isn’t unearthing any new ground.

Furries — people who dress up and behave as animals — have been around for decades, and the only new twist we can see is a trend towards preferring latex over fur costumes.

Participants, as always, range from those who enjoy a playful escape from reality to those who truly wish to be another species, from those seeking to shock and grab attention to those who are probably in need of some mental health counseling.

Anonymous sex, as always, while not what it’s entirely about, remains a strong component — at least for some participants.

The director of the documentary, Guy Simmonds told Newsweek he began pursuing the project after he “stumbled across some pictures [of human dogs] on the Internet.”

“… The more we researched it, the more surprised I was to learn how large the community was in the U.K. They’ve got their own social networking sites, events and competitions.”

The documentary aired Wednesday night.

Simmonds says puppy players (generally men) come from all walks of life: “We’ve come across librarians, security guards, even CEOs of huge corporations who wanted to remain anonymous. There are gay, straight, transsexual, asexual pups.”

One 42-year-old man described the appeal of pretending to be a pup this way:

“Life is getting more hectic nowadays, so much pressure on work and life. Some people drink, there’s drugs… You’ve got to be civilized in our society. When you’re in puppy mode, all that goes away. We don’t care about money; we don’t care about what job you’ve got, or the bigger car.”

For other people, role-playing as a dog can be a way of dealing with social anxiety, deep-rooted childhood issues or chronic medical conditions.

London-based psychotherapist Wendy Bristow says it is not uncommon for those who have experienced childhood trauma to seek comfort in forms of escapism. She points to cases of paraphilic infantilism, in which adults seek comfort by putting on diapers and regressing back to being a baby.

By taking on the role of something in need of nurturing — be it puppy or baby — they may be attempting to make up for a lack of it in their pasts.

“The technical term is displacement,” she said. “They’re doing an activity that gets them comfort, but they’re not expected to relate back apart from being grateful.”

Whatever the case, it seems there is one thing that both dogs and men who dress up as dogs are probably seeking more than anything else — attention.

Nice work if you can get it



Sorry, this dog wasn’t asleep on the job, we were.

Blame the sheep.

We now know, thanks to a helpful commenter, this is Lamo, a 13-month-old sheep who was hit by a car and taken in by Jennifer Jones, who runs Rockfield Animal Rescue in England.

Being brought up with her three dogs, Lamo thinks he is one, too, she says.

“Lamo is so sure he is a pooch he fetches sticks and balls, wears a collar and a lead, jumps up on his hind legs — and even tries to BARK,” she wrote in posting his video to YouTube.

At least one of the dogs, meanwhile, Judy, apparently thinks Lamo is a dog bed.

Earlier today, we presented the photograph above, indicating the unidentified dog was a working dog and implying — as some other websites did — that possibly he was slacking off while on herding duty.

In truth, it was I who was slacking off — by failing to track down the source of the report.

Generally speaking, that sort of thing comes back to bite you in the butt — kind of like what happens to another one of Jones’s dogs, Poppy, at the end of the video below.

Dog-killing artist gets monster commission

Sometimes artists can sink as low as … well, NFL quarterbacks and the designers of cell phone applications.

Back in 1977,  when he was 25, artist Tom Otterness produced “Shot Dog Film,” in which he chained and killed a small dog he adopted from a shelter for that purpose. The dog’s slow death is shown  repeatedly in the movie.

Now the Brooklyn-based sculptor has been commissioned for $750,000 by a mysterious donor to sculpt whimsical bronze lions and cubs as a gift to be installed outside the Battery Park City branch of the New York Public Library.

Downtown’s Community Board 1, in a 23-7 vote last week, “wholeheartedly” gave the project its blessing, according to the New York Post, despite outrage from animal lovers.

Otterness is best known for his bulbous bronze people and creatures, which can be found at various locations around New York, such as at the 14th Street subway station in Manhattan.

In 2008, the sculptor apologized for killing a dog for his “avante garde” movie:

“Thirty years ago when I was 25 years old, I made a film in which I shot a dog. It was an indefensible act that I am deeply sorry for. Many of us have experienced profound emotional turmoil and despair. Few have made the mistake I made. I hope people can find it in their hearts to forgive me.”

Not everyone has.

“Otterness’ new work won’t be one that PETA members will be rushing to see,” Colleen O’Brien, a PETA spokeswoman, told New York’s Metro. “Any man who would adopt a dog and then film himself shooting the animal needs a good psychiatrist — not another art show.”

Donor helps teen girl get her dog back

A teenager in Michigan got her dog, Blackie, back — thanks to an anonymous donor who footed her bill at the pound after reading of her plight.

Tia Schidler, 14, was swarmed with emails after TV station WNDU first aired the story of how she was unable to come up with the $200 she needed get her dog from the St. Joseph County Humane Society.

Humane Society officials weren’t all that thrilled with the happy ending, because it was the third time the dog had been picked up for running loose.

“I think everyone needs to understand this is rewarding bad behavior,” said Carol Ecker, humane society director. “If the dog continues to get loose it’s going to die.”

On Friday morning, Tia’s $200 bill — a  $100 pick-up fee, a $75 fine as a third offender, a $20 vaccination fee, and a $10 charge for food and care —  was paid in full by one of many people who offered to help the Michiana teen.

Tia’s mom was unable to help her with the bill because she’s disabled, the TV station reported in its first story.

Tia promised her rescuer that she wouldn’t let the dog run loose again, and said she was ecstatic to get her dog back. “Wow. That is like so amazing,” she said. “I didn’t think anyone would actually do that because of the way the economy is now.”