Jan. 25 (UPI) — Dennis Quaid says “absolutely no dogs were harmed” on the set of “A Dog’s Purpose.”
The 62-year-old actor responded in an interview on Wednesday’s episode of the “Today” show to a video that appears to show a German shepherd being forced to jump in rushing water for the new movie.
“Absolutely no dogs were harmed in this,” Quaid declared. “This was a piece of video that was shot during the making of this by some unknown person at the time.”
“He also spliced, edited and manipulated that to make it look as if a dog was being abused,” he added. “The dog had been in that water happily, and even afterwards, too. The dog was fine.”
“What is not shown is divers under the water for the dog. Every precaution was taken. Platforms directly underneath the water that the dog was standing on — not dangling in the water,” the star said. “The dog was great. He wanted to do it again.”
“A Dog’s Purpose” came under heavy fire last week after TMZ published the video in question, which was shot in November 2015. Producer Amblin Partners and distributor Universal Pictures told the website they will investigate the incident.
“Fostering a safe environment and ensuring the ethical treatment of our animal actors was of the utmost importance to those involved in making this film and we will look into the circumstances surrounding this video,” the companies said.
A Dog’s Purpose is based on the book of the same name by W. Bruce Cameron, which follows a dog throughout his life and multiple reincarnations. Quaid and Peggy Lipton star, with Josh Gad as the voice of the dog, Bailey.