A prank has proven controversial after people were incorrectly led to believe they’d consumed dog’s milk.
The stunt, by animal rights charity PETA, saw people swearing, spitting and gagging at the idea they’d tasted dog’s milk - even though many of them had seemingly appeared to enjoy the drink prior to being told where it had come from.
It was later revealed that the unsuspecting milk drinkers had been sipping soy milk, not dog’s milk, much to their relief.
“If the thought of drinking dogs’ milk makes you feel ill, why drink the milk from any other animal?” a PETA spokesperson wrote in a blog post.
Throughout the video, people are called upon to test a new type of milk from a brand called Barkers.
Initially, they sit and sip the milk, praising the taste and how creamy it is. But everything turns sour when the woman handing out the milk tells people it’s from a dog.
One person spat the milk out, while another spat on the floor, others simply looked horrified or cursed.
PETA’s aim was to question whether there is any difference between drinking milk from a cow and dog.
“There is nothing ‘normal’ about artificially inseminating a cow and forcing her to give birth, only to tear her beloved calf away from her so that the milk that nature intended for her baby can be consumed by humans instead,” PETA’s Dan Howe wrote in a blog.
“Humans are the only species on the planet to drink another animal’s milk, and cows’ milk is no more natural for us than dogs’ or rats’ milk would be.
“Cows’ milk is for calves – it enables them to gain hundreds of kilos in a matter of months. But for humans, milk is high in fat, is a common trigger for allergies, and is linked to many illnesses.”
Howe added that the dairy industry “fuels cruelty to animals on a huge scale”.
“Cows on dairy farms, even organic ones, relive the nightmarish cycle of pregnancy and losing their babies year in and year out, until they can no longer produce enough milk to be commercially viable, which is when they are sent to slaughter,” he said.
The move understandably proved divisive among internet users.
YouTube user VeganAlfie commented on the video: “This is perfect. I love [how] simple it is. Hopefully it really gets people thinking!”
But Zachary Campbell disagreed. “It’s just milk, what the problem?” he wrote. “Some people are so naive: milk is milk and meat tastes lovely.”