WARNING: Parents Concerned Over ‘Grooming’ Message in Kids’ Movie

Thinking about taking the kids to the movies next school holidays? You may want to reconsider your movie choice if you’re preparing to take in the child-friendly flick Show Dogs.

Parents are voicing their concerns over an inappropriate theme involving sexual misconduct clearly displayed during one of the movie scenes.

Show Dogs movie warning grooming

For some, it might not be worth taking note of. But for others, it could wave a red flag, especially if you would prefer to keep your kids away from this type of behaviour.

The Show Dogs movie warning all parents need to be aware of 

Show Dogs sounds innocent enough. It focuses on a talking police dog, Max (voiced by Ludacris) and his human partner (Will Arnett). Max needs to go undercover as a show dog in order to catch a criminal. Yes, very Miss Congeniality. But with talking dogs.

show dogs movie warning

Anyhow, in order to become a Show Dog, Max needs to have his genitals touched and inspected. Max isn’t okay with this. But, despite voicing his opinion and saying HELL TO THE NO, Max’s requests are ignored. Then Max gets bullied into doing it. Because his career rides on whether or not he allows a stranger to touch his genitals.

Cue the wrong.

‘Find your zen place’

As one very unimpressed parent, Terina Maldonado from Macaroni Kid writes, it’s not just the idea that’s wrong, but the conversations used to help Max get through this uncomfortable incident:

Frank touches Max’s private parts to get him use to it.  Of course, Max doesn’t like it and snaps at Frank for him to stop.  Max is then told by the former champion, who has been through the process before, that he needs to go to his “zen place” while it happens so he can get through it.”

The day of the finals come and if Max doesn’t let his private parts be touched, he may lose the competition and any hope of finding the kidnapped panda.  It all rests on his ability to let someone touch his private parts.  The judge’s hands slowly reach behind Max and he goes to his “zen place”.  He’s flying through the sky, dancing with his partner, there are fireworks and flowers-everything is great-all while someone is touching his private parts.

This particular scene would be hard to watch on the big screen, even if it involves dogs. It would also be hard to explain to a child. After all, this is COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE behaviour in the human form. And it is probably not an acceptable plot line, regardless of whether it involves animals or not, to show your impressionable children.

Filmmakers issue apology 

After receiving the negative feedback, the filmmakers issued their response to Maldonado and others in a statement obtained by Entertainment Weekly:

“The dog show judging in this film is depicted completely accurately as done at shows around the world; and was performed by professional and highly respected dog show judges. Global Road Entertainment and the filmmakers are saddened and apologise to any parent who feels the scene sends a message other than a comedic moment in the film, with no hidden or ulterior meaning, but respect their right to react to any piece of content.”

Show Dogs hits Australian cinemas 5 July 2018.


So what do you think? Would this scene make you uncomfortable or would you be okay with watching it with your kids?

Avatar of Jenna Galley

Born and raised in Canada, Jenna now lives in Far North Queensland with her tribe. When the mum-of-three is not writing, you can find her floating in the pool, watching princess movies, frolicking on the beach, bouncing her baby to sleep or nagging her older kids to put on their pants.

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