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Puppy Caught Throwing Off His Sweater While Home Alone Delights Internet

Aug 14, 2023

A video of a French bulldog that seems to take off his sweater while he's home alone has gone viral on TikTok, receiving 2.2 million views.

A message overlaid on the clip, shared by TikTok user @maliamakaila, read: "Leaving my 7 month old puppy at home alone and watching what he does for 8 hours while I work."

The video begins with shots of the puppy wearing a blue sweater and sitting quietly on the floor while staring into the camera. The clip later shows a person "putting on a Netflix movie" for the dog, which is seen lying down on a potty pad before appearing "confused," with his head turning toward different corners of the room.

Strangely, the puppy is later seen with his "sweater half off," then is shown sleeping with it completely off. When the owner gets home from work, the clip shows the dog's sweater draped over the top edge of a TV set.

A March 2021 survey conducted by market research firm OnePoll, in partnership with Portland, Oregon–based Banfield Pet Hospital, found that one in three people—and nearly one in two people from Generation Z (those born from 1996 to 2012)—said they got a new pet during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Just under a third (32 percent) of owners—including 48 percent of Generation Z members and 35 percent of millennials (those born between 1981 and 1996)—said they've recently contacted their veterinarian for advice about making the transition back to work easier on their pets.

How did he do that? 😅 #fyp #dogsoftiktok

Several TikTokers were concerned about the young dog in the video being left alone. Debbie Harris wrote: "Should not leave a puppy or adult dog for eight hours a day [tearing eye/sad face emoji]."

In an article for VCA, one of North America's largest animal hospital chains, with over 1,000 animal hospitals, veterinarians Debra Horwitz and Gary Landsberg wrote, "Puppies need to learn how to have alone time and amuse themselves with their toys."

The veterinarians also said that "a well-adjusted puppy should do well either alone or with the family and will be less likely to have separation anxiety in the future."

Separation anxiety is "a serious condition where the dog is severely stressed from the moment you leave until you finally return," wrote Stephanie Gibeault, a certified personal dog trainer, in a March article for the American Kennel Club.

A dog that hasn't learned to enjoy time on its own can exhibit problematic behaviors when left alone. "At best, an untrained solitary puppy will make their own fun, and no doubt in ways that aren't fun for you. At worst, they can develop separation anxiety," Gibeault said.

But teaching your puppy that "enjoyable things happen" when they're alone (such as getting toys and treats) will help it cope with "not being the center of attention, even when you are at home," she said.

Once you've taught the pet to be alone, even when you're just in another room, your dog won't associate your leaving the house with being alone. "You should be able to head to work or the grocery store without worry," Gibeault said.

Some TikTok commenters expressed concern about the sweater being potentially dangerous for the dog. User Ashley wrote: "I wouldn't keep the sweater on him! If he gets caught on something it could accidentally strangle him!"

Kimberly Duff agreed, saying: "He's very cute.....I wouldn't leave a sweater on him......could get caught on something and that could end really badly."

According to Columbia Veterinary Trauma and Specialty (CVETS), an emergency veterinary service based in South Carolina, "There is no harm in dressing a dog in a comfortable, cotton or wool sweater for winter weather; in fact, it is helpful for reducing stress and keeping smaller breeds warm in cooler temperatures."

CVETS also advises sticking to jackets and sweaters and avoiding those that are "difficult to put on your pet or that could present a choking hazard of any kind, such as apparel with buttons or bows.

"Never put pants or other clothing on your pet—particularly if they will be wearing it unsupervised. Only choose practical clothing made from quality materials that are natural and that fit well," CVETS said.

Other TikTokers were simply amused by the video and were left wondering what happened to the sweater and how it ended up on the TV.

In a comment that got 4,984 likes, Emma Georgia asked: "Why is no one wondering how the sweater got up there?!? [crying/laughing emojis]."

Stina Serene Rhude agreed, writing: "WHY IS NO ONE TALKING ABOUT THE SWEATER ON THE TV? Forget the 8 hours the dog is fine but the SWEATER?"

User zuritamyriam said: "Still waiting to find out how the sweater got up there."

Newsweek has contacted the original poster for comment. The video has not been independently verified.

Do you have funny and adorable videos or pictures of your pet you want to share? Send them to [email protected] with some details about your best friend and they could appear in our Pet of the Week lineup.

Do you have funny and adorable videos or pictures of your pet you want to share? Send them to [email protected] with some details about your best friend and they could appear in our Pet of the Week lineup.