Whoever said we don’t deserve dogs was probably right. They will show their affection in ways that make you wonder if humans come over close to reciprocating. The great thing about our furry friends is they never tire, and their actions always amaze us. One man who spent $400 at the vet only to find out his dog imitated his injury out of sympathy knows for a fact the lengths that his fur baby can go to prove his love. The imitation is not being taken as an indication of compassion by some experts who believe the dog could be in real pain. Their point is valid since animals have been known to fake illnesses, so let’s see if the man should be alarmed about his dog’s health.
For the Love of His Humans
When Russell and his partner, Michelle, brought Billy and his sister, Ruby, home almost ten years ago, they did not know they were going to raise a “con artist.” The puppies grew up alongside couple’s two children, Kieran and Maisie. Unfortunately, Ruby died from kidney failure three years ago, leaving Billy to hang out with his parents. The dog loves to always be around his humans but allows them time to have dinner in peace by lying on his blanket.
However, Billy showed another side of his personality when Russell broke his leg when working as a window cleaner. Therefore, he had to walk on crutches whenever he took Billy for a walk. Russell became concerned after observing that Billy had developed a limp. As the concerned parent that Russell is, he took Billy to the vet to determine the limp’s cause. The vet did some x-rays and even administered some painkillers to Billy, thinking that he was in pain. After several consultations with the vet, they concluded that there was nothing wrong with Billy, and he was only limping out of sympathy for his human.
“Con-artist” in Action Goes Viral
As weird as it is, the couple remembered that it was not the first that Billy had displayed such behavior. When Michelle had to lie on her back after pulling a muscle, Billy would not leave her side. He lay on the floor as Michelle slept on the sofa, and whenever she got up, Billy would follow closely behind her. Still, they had to be sure that this time Billy was indeed feigning a limp. Therefore, after hearing the vet’s conclusion, they took him to the garden and watched him walk like Russell. Russell decided to put the matter to rest by ensuring that Billy would not imitate the walk. He took the canine out for a walk on his father’s scooter and saw that Billy was no longer limping.
All the same, after spending $400 on vet bills for a fake illness, Russell still does not have anything negative about Billy. As published by Bored Panda, he only said he loves him. The silver lining in the fake cloud is that the dog has lifted the spirits of those who have watched the video that has gone viral. Although Michelle had posted the video last year, it did not go viral. Yet, upon Russell posting it in a dog Facebook group named the Greyhound and Lurcher, Billy became an instant internet sensation. The clip has been watched over 2 million times and attracted comments that praised Billy’s action being out of pure love.
Is it Normal for Dogs to Fake Injuries?
One member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers, Rosie Bescoby, believes that Billy is not faking the limp. She opines that dogs must be trained to copy human behavior and never do it out of sympathy. Therefore, she is assured that Billy is in pain and advises Russell and Michelle to seek a second opinion; according to her, it could be something as small as a thorn that cannot show up in an x-ray. However, the fact that Billy is up and jumping whenever he is not watching Russell makes us believe he is faking the limp.
Besides, other dogs have been proven to be great at faking illnesses or injuries supports the vet’s conclusion. According to the New York Post, one street dog named Gae fakes a broken leg so that tourists can pity him and give him some treats. The locals already know of his trick and feed him, but still, Gae is not content with rice; he prefers a diet change once in a while, even if it means scamming innocent tourists.
Sometimes it is not about food or sympathy for owners but rather fulfilling the dog’s selfish needs, as was the case with one dog, Sully, who pretended to be sick so his humans could stay at home with him. He feigned coughing and choking, which worried his humans so much that they started browsing the net looking for ways to resuscitate the dog if the illness progressed. However, as reported by People, Sully would be okay at night but immediately start coughing when he watched his owners getting ready for work. Upon taking him to the vet and spending $85 on consultation, the vet concluded that Sully was faking a cough.
How Do You Know a Dog Is Faking Illness/Injury?
Usually, it takes a vet’s help to determine if your dog is faking illness because you cannot assume that he is. However, you can easily spot a cough “scam artist” by observing how he coughs. For instance, if the dog forces himself to cough as you pet him or makes eye contact, he most probably is deceiving you. The best way to deal with fake coughs, according to News 24, is ignoring the deception, attend to them enough, so they do not feel deprived of attention, and visiting a vet to rule out any real illness.