People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is making it clear that dogs are not movie props.
USA Today reports the organization is calling for a boycott of the upcoming film A Dog's Purpose after a video was released showing a scared-looking German shepherd being forced into churning water.
TMZ originally shared the video, explaining at least one crew member present during the scene was "extremely disturbed by the dog's treatment during this scene."
The video's commenters seem to think the only reason the dog didn't want to enter the water is because he feared it was cold. But the rushing created to look like rapids was also clearly an issue since as soon as the dog was forced into the water, he became submerged. The frantic crew members then yelled cut and rushed to the dog's aid.
"New footage shows a terrified dog who is forced into churning water on set," PETA senior vice president Lisa Lange said in a statement to USA Today. "At one point, a dog who is in danger of drowning has to be rescued."
Lange continued by asking dog lovers to "boycott the film in order to send the message that dogs and other animals should be treated humanely, not as movie props."
Actor Josh Gad, who did the voice for the dogs in the film, also released a statement on Twitter condemning the video and promising readers he would also be investigating the treatment of the dogs in the film.
As a voice actor for the movie, Gad was never actually present on set.
Amblin Partners and Universal Pictures released a statement following the video's release, stating, "Fostering a safe environment and ensuring the ethical treatment of our animal actors was of the utmost importance to those involved in making this film, and we will look into the circumstances surrounding this video."
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