A video of a mother dog’s seemingly emotional reaction to being rescued with her puppies has sparked an interesting debate in the Twitterverse. Do dogs really cry tears caused by an emotional response? It sure does look like it! Posted by user @juanbrunetto on August 17th, the video shows the dog feeding her puppies after being rescued, when suddenly real tears rapidly roll down her face. There is no question, of course, that the tears are real. However, it’s a matter of what exactly is eliciting the apparently emotional response, that has many people wrapped up in hot debate. While many people know that dogs do have feelings, most assert that in no way are their tears the result of emotion. User @_Merina_ said: “What it takes to humanize dogs, crying for feelings / emotions is just a human trait.
The dog can have an eye problem. Good thing they were rescued, but do not humanize the animals.” Promptly replying to her response, @ prisparisz wrote: “Animals also cry not because of eye problems! I’m witness!” In fact, the general consensus on the subject is that tears of emotion are strictly a human attribute. Others have taken a deeper look, though, and there is definitely more than what meets the eye.Physiologically speaking, dogs are very similar to us in that they do have tear ducts that serve the same purposes as our own. Dog tears lubricate the eyes and help protect it from foreign objects such as dust. When a dog is experiencing health problems like allergies, the tear duct can be blocked from draining adequately and, as a result, tears will spill over from the eye and roll down the cheek, much like a human’s will when they sneeze. This phenomenon is called epiphora and can happen in all dogs, but particularly Pugs, Spaniels, and Pitbulls because of their “squished” facial features. Although this is definitely a real occurrence in dogs, does it really exclude all their shed tears from being initiated by feelings? If so, then why would an otherwise healthy dog start “crying” during what is definitely an emotional moment, but at no other time exhibit epiphora? Perhaps the mother dog in this video is suffering from the condition, as she looks a bit bedraggled and the worse for ware. Yet, how would one explain the many other animals who have been known to cry, like Emma the cow? Emma was a dairy cow in Germany. When the farm went under, she was set for the slaughterhouse. Thankfully, a German animal rescue charity was able to purchase her and ship her to the Kuhrettung Rhein-Berg Sanctuary. Here, she would be able to live out the rest of her days free from the demands of farm life, and free from the slaughter. Yet when they loaded her on the trailer, poor Emma had no idea what her future entailed. The perfectly healthy cow began to cry real tears of fear and terror. And then there is the matter of the elephant.
Mirá cómo reacciona esta perrita luego de ser rescatada junto a sus cachorros 😭😭😭pic.twitter.com/vphWPlob2a
— ᒍᑌᗩᑎ (@juanbrunetto) August 18, 2018