Do movie ratings apply to pets?
From The Editor ...
Does anyone know how movie ratings translate to dog years?
I ask because my husky, Cooper, has been more interested in watching TV than any animal I’ve ever seen.
In a general sense, sound can draw him to search the big screen in the living room for whatever animal is being displayed.
A meow or whinny will make him raise his head as his head snaps forward on his long neck.
Then he will tune in with his ears. (Their ability to move independently while picking out sounds has led Dad to give him the nickname, Radar.)
If you haven’t noticed he’s watching the movie with you by this point, you will if you happen to be watching a movie where animals remain on the screen, like, say, a period drama with a horse-drawn carriage.
I’m actually unsure Cooper has seen a horse in real-life yet so he’s probably mystified by these huge creatures.
I guess that because he will jump up and stand in front of the screen, his upturned tail wagging and his head craning from side-to-side.
He’s done this enough that he understands to move when I yell, “Down in front!”
He also likes to follow birds that fly around the screen in games I play, but of course, he responds most to dogs.
This can be unfortunate in the home of a movie lover.
I was showing a friend “John Wick” and he got really interested in that puppy at the beginning when it first appeared and whined.
I sat there praying he’d lose interest before the puppy gets shot (which happens off-screen and partially kicks off the revenge story), but the fade to black made him very curious what happened to the puppy that was now lying motionless on Keanu Reeves’ lap.
A couple of weeks ago I also revisited a Mexican film, “Amores Perros,” which features many stories with dogs but starts with a plot about dog-fighting.
He looked at the screen and then looked at me and cocked his head. Then he just went back to sleep.
It was the first time I felt judged by my pet for the movies I watch.
What’s funny is he doesn’t need sound to get interested in a movie, and the movie doesn’t even need to look realistic.
I was watching a Japanese animated film called Wolf Children while wearing
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my ears, a man turned into a bright blue wolf in a very stylized design. Cooper had glanced at the screen and ran up to it, pacing around and occasionally looking back at me. Obviously, the fact that cartoon people can become wolves had blown his mind.
All of this leads to the picture I’ve included of Cooper watching Isle of Dogs. Sure, there’s a husky on the screen, but he’s animated in stop-motion and voiced by Jeff Goldblum.
It was also a much darker movie than I expected about dogs being relocated to a trash island with some fighting, injuries and bloodletting. Part of me wonders if I should censor what movies my dog watches but he obviously enjoyed it as he watched the whole time without a judgmental glance back my way.
Gaudette is the managing editor at the Dublin Citizen and can be reached at 445-2515 and firstname.lastname@example.org .