Dogs in Super Bowl Ads: Fun or Foul Play?
Dogs are the star of media these days. They capture our eyes and our hearts. So, it makes sense that companies would spend enormous amounts of money featuring them in commercials. I love the preview I saw of the Volkswagen upcoming Super Bowl advertisement. Called “The Bark Side” on YouTube, the dogs are barking to a Star Wars theme. Very creative and if you watch carefully, the dogs are wagging their tails, have relaxed body positions, and are enjoying every second of it. It’s very obvious to me that they were trained using reward based positive training methods.
The Bark Side: 2012 Volkswagen Game Day Commercial Teaser
At over 10 million views so far on YouTube, I wouldn’t be surprised if Volkswagen is the real winner of the 2012 Super Bowl.
Next: The Dark Side of Companies Exploiting Dogs in Advertising
Earlier this month I wrote about the Skechers Super Bowl ad portraying racing Greyhounds from the Tuscon Greyhound Park running against a small dog wearing Skechers. Even though the Humane Society of the United States says that no animals were hurt in the making of the commercial, dog lovers are criticizing what is happening behind the scenes. Greyhounds are notorious for being treated inhumanely at racing tracks, and the Tuscon Greyhound Park is known to be one of the worst. The real circumstances of what happens behind the scenes was best said by a rescued Greyhound that wrote a letter to Dogster readers. Hope (her new name) goes into great detail on everything from the spoiled food she was fed, the disgusting conditions in her kennel compound where she was forced to relieve where she slept, and the steroids she was injected so that her odds of winning were greater. And if Skechers had done their homework, they also wouldn’t have had their star of their ad wearing a choke chain (aka training collar).
In contrast, there are the hero dogs of the Superbowl that are behind the scenes. Bomb sniffing dogs have been customarily part of the overall security at recent superbowl games, so I suspect they will be this year as well.
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