A Problematic Social Media Stunt
You are probably quite used to seeing animals become social media stars. It now seems that a video of your pet is the route to success and a million views on YouTube. Naturally the pet in question has to be unusual, incredibly cute or exhibiting amusing behaviour. This has caused a huge rise in the popularity of cats and dogs with physical traits that look adorable, but which can cause a raft of health issues.
Flat faced cats with shortened noses look grumpy and amusing. Since several of these unfortunate animals started to become social media sensations, breeders have been trying to produce more and more extreme examples. But these cats have breathing issues and are prone to infections. Now there is a danger that this unfortunate trend may be about to extend to horses.
A video of a miniature horse sitting in a high chair has sparked a great deal of outrage with people branding it animal abuse and exploitation. Japan’s Suetoshi Farm shot the footage which is now suffering a significant backlash, although some people have liked the video.
The miniature horse is shown eating carrots whilst sitting upright in the chair. Many of the outraged comments have pointed out that this could injure the horse’s back. The debate has become rather heated with many horse lovers saying that the horse has been abused and questioning the intelligence of those who posted the video!
One upset viewer commented "Understanding the anatomy of a horse’s gut, digestive system and the position of the organs would tell you never to do this." Others have claimed that sitting up could be good for the horse as miniature ponies can suffer from megaesophagus, a malformation of the esophagus that makes it hard to swallow. Sitting could make it easier for them to swallow the food. But this sounds like a fairly desperate defence!
It is surely time that people stopped encouraging animals to exhibit such unnatural behaviour. It would certainly be a good thing if people stopped revelling in what basically amounts to deformities. If the current trend continues it won’t be long before YouTube is awash with videos of horses struggling with stupidly short legs. Cats have already fallen victim to this awful idea.
Amusing animal antics are one thing, deliberately breeding animals with deformities is quite another.