Doing the viral #snootchallenge could actually be good for your dog – here’s why

Training dogs to do the challenge could make vet visits easier, experts say.
Freddy Merlecury/Facebook

By now – based on Instagram at least – at least 11,000 dogs worldwide are already snoot challenge champs.

The challenge involves a dog sticking its snout into the space between a person’s fingers, which can be shaped into a circle, heart or triangle. This makes for an up-close picture of a wet, heart-melting doggo nose.

Videos of dogs worldwide seemingly attempting the challenge are quickly taking over Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, including some hilarious #fail attempts.

While it turns out that the behaviour isn’t instinctive, some dogs complete the challenge easily because they associate their owner’s hands with getting petted.

Others require a little bit of training – some sites have even published step-by-step guides on how to get dogs to finish the challenge.

Some netizens have voiced concerns that the challenge could prevent the dogs from breathing, but in fact, experts claim that teaching dogs to do the snoot challenge can help them get used to people handling their faces.

This can help them keep calm during vet visits.

Learning to putting their snouts into small openings also trains dogs to be comfortable if they ever need to wear muzzles or post-surgery cones that prevent them from biting or licking wounds.

It seems that as long as owners are gentle and don’t clamp down on the snout too tight, their dogs will be just fine.

Experts also advised owners not to force dogs who seem uncomfortable with the challenge.