Sometimes our dogs are like our babies.
From their cute, squishy faces, their loving but goofy nonverbal communication, and the way that they depend on us for care, it's not a huge stretch to infantilize our pups -- especially when they do something particularly babylike to reinforce our parental feelings of affection toward them.
So when Erik Lanier put his rescue chow/Labrador mix on a swing set at a park in North Carolina and she absolutely loved it, it was nearly impossible for people to not be absolutely smitten (video below).
Somebody managed to film Lanier and the pup, named Sara, enjoying the adorable moment in 2009. Since it was uploaded to YouTube around that time, more than 2,779,000 people have viewed it, as of the afternoon of April 20.
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"[Sara] has been doing this for about 4 years and goes absolutely crazy whenever we tell her we are going swinging at the playground," Lanier explained in the video's caption.
The sweet two-minute clip shows Lanier and Sara walk toward the swing set. Once they are close, he asks the pup if she wants to go on the swing, so she jumps up on him in response. He picks her up and secures her hind legs in the seat, just like one would do for a baby. Sarah sits up straight and places her front paws over the front of the seat to secure herself as she swings back and forth calmly, with a big smile on her face.
"And she's not letting you know it's enough," says the woman filming. "How long will she let you do that?"
"About a half hour," responds Lanier. "She seems to like it once she gets in there."
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Most of the viewers loved the video, judging by the more than 4,000 likes and 151 dislikes.
"Just look how peaceful and happy he seems … " one person commented. "This has been a very stressful day, but this brought a smile on my face. "
A few people did take issue with it, with one saying, "She's panting to get rid of anxiety. Her tail is also tucked in. She doesn't enjoy it."
Lanier quickly shot down the haters.
"My dog loves it, or I wouldn't do it," Lanier replied. "Please watch the other videos to see her reaction to being asked if she wants to go to the park (where she swings EVERY time) ... I have had MANY dog behavior specialists and veterinarians comment on this video saying that she is not under anxiety and enjoys it. Again, I would not do it if my dog didn't enjoy it. I LOVE MY DOG!!!!"
Indeed, Sara is far from the first dog who willingly gets onto swings and enjoys the feeling of being rocked back and forth with the wind in their faces. There are tons of videos online of pups swinging like Sara, notes The Huffington Post.