Youtuber Brooke Houts Won’t Be Charged With Animal Abuse

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When it comes to prank YouTubers, there’s really not much that can be said in their favor. Whether they’re doing a Jake Paul style “abusing their friends” joke, or a classic Sam Pepper sexual assault “butt grabbing stunt,” it seems that they all too often miss the mark of hilarity – and land somewhere in the world of offensive and cruel.

But one scandal to hit prank YouTube was perhaps the worst in the history of the genre. In a horrendous social media error, actress and YouTuber, Brooke Houts, uploaded some unedited “prank” footage which appeared to show her abusing her dog in a variety of heartbreaking ways. The internet was quick to condemn the footage, but Houts has spoken out with an “explanation” of her vile actions.

And, now, it appears that, in spite of video evidence, there won’t be any repercussions following the incident.

via : IMDB

Who exactly is Brooke Houts? Well, she’s a twenty-year-old YouTuber and actress, born in Atlanta, Georgia, but she’s currently living in Los Angeles.

via : IMDB

Or at least, she was. Houts has over three hundred thousand subscribers on her YouTube channel, where she posts the usual type of “vlogger” content – favorites videos, day in the life montages, and, of course, pranks.

One of her most popular uploads supposedly features her making out with an ex – with extra bonus shocked emojis and Tabasco sauce overlays.

For the past year and a half, Houts has had a pet Doberman, who’s called Sphinx. Sphinx even has his own Instagram account, where he has over seven thousand followers.

She regularly uploads videos to her YouTube channel, where Sphinx is the focus, and, until recently, many thought that the pair had a typically loving pet-and-owner bond.

And, although many dog fans know that Dobermans are usually pretty hard work, there weren’t many worries about how this petite twenty-year-old was coping with her large pet.

They’re known for growing to pretty imposing sizes, with females weighing up to seventy-five pounds, and males, like Sphinx, sometimes reaching one-hundred pounds. Dobermans are very loving pets, but they’re also hard work, requiring a lot of exercise and training.

The vids are usually pretty simplistic in nature – but, hey, if they get her views, then fair enough. Except for the most recent “prank” upload, which has attracted a lot of attention, but for all the wrong reasons.

In the opening, Houts claims to be playing a prank on her dog, by placing saran wrap over a doorway and seeing his reaction. Pretty generic stuff – but basically harmless right?

The footage that Houts actually uploaded was not the edited end-footage of the prank. Instead, it’s some behind the scenes shots of her behaving in a pretty vile way.

He jumps up in Houts’ face (as dogs are sometimes wont to do) – but she violently smacks him down while cruelly telling him off.

As Houts sits cross-legged on the floor, Sphinx appears to attempt to jump into her lap. But Houts grabs him by the neck, holds him down, and appears to spit on him.

Houts quickly took the video down from her channel and uploaded the “correct” version of the edited prank – but the damage to her reputation was already done.

She posted an incredibly long … well, we can’t exactly call it an “apology,” more of an explanation.

But she also attempts to justify her actions as a way of disciplining her dog. Houts also totally denies spitting in her dog’s face – in spite of the fact that it was captured on video.

She says that anyone who knows her in real life knows that she’s a total animal lover and that she’d never hurt or distress any pet of hers.

As her YouTube subscriber count dwindles, and comments fill up with criticism of her behavior and concern for Sphinx, Houts has deleted her Instagram account.

One of the primary reasons that people aren’t keen to forgive Houts is the fact that she appears to still be denying her actions – even though they’re literally captured on film.

Anthony Fantano, who runs popular music review channel, The Needle Drop, replied to her apology with this ingenious response.

Instead of directly attacking Houts, some have quite another priority – to ensure that her dog, Sphinx, is safe and happy.

Logan Paul, main character in one of the best known YouTube scandals (filming the body of a man who had committed suicide then posting it to his channel), has even criticized Houts.

The fact that this abuse only came to light because of an “accidental” upload suggests that there may have been even worse things that have happened which simply never saw the light of day.

Whether or not this is a one-off act of violence by Houts, a one-off act of violence by her dog would have been enough to warrant severe repercussions.

It seems that Houts has a problematic history when it comes to training and taking care of Sphinx. We’re not saying that raising a Doberman is easy, by any means. But what we are saying is that you shouldn’t undertake the task if you aren’t willing to put in the hard work that it requires.

He shows how loving, calm, and well-behaved a properly trained and well looked-after Doberman can be. Quite the contrast to Houts’ video.

But, as any YouTuber should remember, the internet is forever. So: here’s the video. But, trigger warning – it’s pretty upsetting stuff, so don’t watch if you’re easily upset.

It’s recently been announced that the Los Angeles Police Department have been made aware of the video, and are investigating Houts for animal cruelty.

While this whole story is pretty horrific stuff, there is some good to come out of it.

People are taking to Twitter to remind everyone out there to, not just look after their dogs, but to give them an extra bit of love.    

A spokesperson for the LAPD spoke to Buzzfeed News about the investigation – claiming that the case was closed and “there was no crime.”

“Animal Task Force looked into the matter — obviously they saw the video the public had seen. They determined it didn’t rise to the level of animal cruelty.”

The fact that the incident was captured on film should surely constitute enough evidence for a case to be brought, right?

Many on social media view this as a total injustice – particularly to Houts’s Doberman, who is, as far as we know, still living with the YouTuber.

Well, it seems that the legal process against Houts is over. But it also seems that, in the court of public opinion, she’s far from innocent until proven guilty. Sadly, this isn’t even the first time that a vlogger has been caught abusing their pet on camera. Read on for the story of a Twitch user who was caught in a similar crossfire.