Skip to main content

Viral video: Puppy piñata party goes adorably right

If your pup loves tug of war, they'll adore this dog piñata idea

Have you ever seen a dog open a gift? Most of the time, humans wrap gifts for dogs like they would for other people, and dogs aren’t quite sure what to make of it. It’s a box, maybe smells like something they want — but they’re totally unsure how to get inside.

Honestly? That’s kind of rude, pet parents. Luckily, one dog dad figured out a better way. He took what dogs already know how to do, instinctively, and used that to give his dog and at least one of its pals what they really want: tennis balls!

The viral video below shows a cleverly rigged piñata that only asks the dog (we’re guessing this pup is a standard black lab) to give a ball dangling from the bottom a tug. It’s a smart ploy: get the dog to use its instincts, and it’s rewarded with more of what it really wants.

After tugging on the ball, the piñata opens to reveal many more balls. After being stunned for a moment, the puppy and his pal (another lab?! Lucky!) each sniff around the room before grabbing a ball of their own to play with.

There’s nothing not to love about this video. Puppy parties, new tennis balls for playing fetch, dog friends, and happy parents. We hope somebody rigs something similar up for a terrier that’s a bit tougher to get into. We bet an American Staffordshire Terrier would just love that!

A chocolate lab plays a game of tug of war indoors.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Why dogs like tugging on things

Dogs like tugging because it’s something they do as puppies during play time. Many experts believe dogs play tug of war to establish trust.

Experts also believe dogs don’t treat humans much differently than other dogs. They may view us as leaders of their pack, but they want to interact with humans the same way they do other dogs. That’s why it’s important to play tug of war with your dog and encourage them to follow their instincts.

To that, these puppy parents are doing a great job. The dog obviously wants to tug, trusts his humans enough to tug on the ball his dog dad tells him to, and is rewarded with so many tennis balls.

But good luck around the holidays and on birthdays, pet parents. That pup may think every gift-wrapped item is full of tennis balls and rip packages open! Guess you’ll have to hide the gifts, moving forward. Small price to pay for the pure joy those puppies are experiencing, though.

Editors' Recommendations

Nate Swanner
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Nate is General Manager for all not-Digital-Trends properties at DTMG, including The Manual, Digital Trends en Espanol…
3 effective tips to make puppy sleep training less of a nightmare
Help your puppy get to sleep with this guide
A black and white French bulldog puppy sleeps in the arms of a person wearing a sweater

Bringing home a new puppy means you’re in for a whole lot of cute … and a lot less sleep. Before 4 months of age, a pup’s sleeping schedule consists of naps throughout the day and night — not the nighttime slumber you’re used to! This is a habit he'll grow out of, but with a few cozy arrangements, you can help your puppy sleep through the night with ease.
Puppy sleep training takes some preparation and time, but it can be done. The first few nights might be difficult if you have a stubborn pup who isn’t ready to hit the hay, but he'll get used to it in time. Here’s what you need to know.
According to the folks at Purina, a puppy is likely to sleep all the way through the night around 16 weeks of age. Although they will need a lot of sleep — around 17 to 20 hours a day — for the first several months of life, these naps will come in small chunks throughout the day. Just like human babies, young puppies alternate between periods of energy and rest, so it’s important to let them sleep when and where they need to.

Should you crate train your puppy?
Sleeping in a crate can benefit both you and your dog, especially when he's younger. A small puppy will have trouble controlling his bladder and might want to chew, which means containing him is essential to keeping him safe. You definitely don't want your animal to swallow something dangerous in the night or while he's home alone.

Read more
Why do dogs cry? The 5 most common reasons
Is crying a real thing with dogs? Find out here
A dog lies on the floor making sad eyes up at the camera

One of the best parts of dog ownership is having someone to comfort you when things feel tough, and we try to do the same for them. However, dogs can cry for all sorts of reasons, and it's not always a good idea to indulge them. Sometimes you need to train your pup that crocodile tears won't get them their way — when they cry to get out of the crate or to get a treat, for example.

On the flip side, you always should keep a watchful eye out for cries that indicate a deeper issue, like sudden pain or discomfort. So you know whether to turn a deaf ear or reach for your phone to call the vet, these are five of the most common reasons your pooch might cry.

Read more
Why do dogs bite their paws? There are many reasons for this behavior
Some reasons may be surprising
A puppy's paws crossed in the grass

If you've noticed your dog biting their paws, you're certainly not alone. Many pet parents have taken to Google to search "dog biting paws," but it can take a lot of research and observation to get a clear-cut answer. In the end, there are many reasons a dog may lick or bite at their paws, and you'll need to pay closer attention to your pup to see what may be going on. This may include physically examining their paws, including the toenails and between the paw pads. If that doesn't do the trick, a veterinarian's exam might be necessary to get to the root of the problem.

But before you dial the phone, read up on these reasons for paw biting to see if anything matches up with what your dog is experiencing.

Read more