A middle school in Kentucky recently took to social media with an unusual request: please ask your kids to stop barking at each other and wearing dog collars to school. Sure, plenty of toddlers like to pretend they’re dogs every now and again, but apparently there is a TikTok trend that’s been quietly, or not so quietly, taking off. Barking. Wearing dog collars. And one Kentucky school already sounds exhausted by the whole thing.
“We want to make you aware of some observations we have made this year regarding some behaviors and trends we are noticing that are different from prior years,” Camp Ernst Middle School in Burlington, Kentucky wrote in a Facebook post to parents. “We have noticed an uptick in TikTok trends such as challenges that encourage kids to destroy the soap dispenser in the bathroom and kids making animal noises toward each other, specifically barking.”
So it seems middle school kids are just out there in the hallways, barking at each other. Get that picture in your mind. Imagine the noise. Now don’t forget to add dog collars in that picture, because that’s apparently part of the whole thing. “We are noticing kids wearing items that are not school-appropriate such as collars (they do not appear to be choker necklaces), leather straps with spikes which can be a safety concern.”
Kids are barking at school.
Now, as much as the school wants to encourage individuality and creativity, they said “we cannot allow kids to bark at each other or any other like behavior.” The post went on to ask for help from parents and caregivers to discourage barking and dog collars at school.
Certain TikTok trends like the dangerous Milk Crate Challenge, where people stack milk crates into a pyramid and try to climb them, have become serious cause for concern for parents. But this barking trend is a whole different kettle of fish. The barking challenge seems to require people to get down on all fours and hop around, barking like a dog. That’s it. Fairly harmless on the surface, but imagine a school full of students barking at each other all day. After everything educators have been through over the past year, the barking challenge is just a bridge too far.