A golden retriever puppy “mimicking” its older sibling is melting hearts on TikTok.
In the cute clip, shared by user Kenzie Keller (@kapandchief) on January 19, a puppy called Kaptain can be seen copying everything adult dog Chief does—from turning their heads at the same time to simultaneously jumping into their pet carriers.
Captioned “literally synced,” they have received over 7 million views and 1.3 million likes.
Why Do Dogs Copy Other Canines?
According to Dr. Jeff Smith, medical director at the Danville Family Vet, it’s common for puppies to imitate an older dog’s routines. In fact, this desire to mimic can be helpful in teaching the puppy positive behaviors, as well as how to overcome fears.
“Often, people use this to their advantage in a ‘monkey see, monkey do’ approach,” he told Newsweek.
“Dogs are naturally pack animals and they look to blend in with the group. Dogs will mimic very specific behaviors, especially if they are rewarded by the rest of the group or by their human.
“The dogs in the [TikTok] video appear to be mirror images of each other, but it is a result of the puppy performing behaviors that have already been proven to be successful and are accepted by the pack.”
It’s not just other pooches that puppies emulate, but their owners too. A 2013 study by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences discovered that dogs can replicate human behavior for as long as 10 minutes after it occurred. That might not sound impressive, but mimicking human behavior is a rare skill in the animal kingdom, one that shows the unique relationship with our canine companions.
According to pet care and training provider Wag!, if a dog lives with a cat, it may also start imitating the feline’s behavior, as it assumes that’s what it “should be doing.”
‘Double the Cuteness’
When Keller adopted Kaptain in 2021, Chief wasn’t impressed by his new baby brother. However, the pair have since bonded, with Kaptain mimicking Chief’s movements.
In the caption, Keller described the twosome as “in total sync,” and fellow TikTokers agreed.
“Wow that’s amazing,” commented Archie the Airedale terrier.
“Dogs are the best trainers,” said emily.
“Double the cuteness,” wrote uno.
“That’s like osmosis or something,” said Cindy.
“Bluetooth paired,” joked Rebecca.
While Lori suggested the duo “tryout for [a] synchronized swim team.”
Newsweek has reached out to @kapandchief for comment.
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