A video of a dog locking eyes on its "mother" from within the confines of a pet store has left TikTok users devastated.
The heartbreaking clip of a pooch gazing out a window longingly at another dog of the same breed has been viewed over 140,000 times and drawn hundreds of comments on the video-sharing app.
In the video, a young German shepherd sits in a confined glass cage with ears perked and its eyes locked dead ahead.
A caption has been added to suggest the pup is asking “Mom, is that you?” before the camera pans to an older dog looking inquisitively back at the younger animal.
Meanwhile, other dogs in the pet shop can be heard barking from inside their own glass cages.
The clip sparked a mixed reaction online, with many expressing their devastation at what they saw.
One wrote: “Aw wee floofer looks so sad and lost." Another commented: “Oh no this is so wrong I want to weep.”
A third said they would "never buy a puppy from any pet store".
“Those dogs need homes just as much as any other dog," a fourth said. "It’s not their fault they were born into unfortunate circumstances!!”
British charity, the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, has shared advice on avoiding buying pets from “unscrupulous sellers” after rescuing a kitten that needed surgery after being bought from a breeder during lockdown.
Shaun Opperman, Battersea’s Veterinary Director, said: “Alani was able to get the treatment she so badly needed.
"Her previous owners made the right decision by handing her into Battersea as they were unable to afford the veterinary procedure. They’d only had her for two days and hadn’t realised how young she was – far too young to be parted from her mother.
“Sadly, this isn’t the first time we have seen animals like Alani being brought into Battersea needing urgent medical care. Animal lovers across the country have been duped into handing over cash to unscrupulous sellers who sell pets without any thought for their welfare.
“We strongly advise those who are thinking about going to private sellers for their pets to do thorough research beforehand, or consider a rescue.
"If you’ve bought a pet during lockdown and aren’t sure you can care for it, please do the right thing and bring it to a rescue centre rather than abandoning it.”
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