Suspicious Buzzing From Dog's Mouth Turns Out to Be Cicada

Those who haven't enjoyed the presence of so many cicadas this summer may want to look away, as a viral video has shown the moments after a dog captured one in its mouth—skin-crawling buzzing noise and all.

Dog owner and TikTok user @sassafras_007 posted a clip of her dog Levy calmly standing three days ago, but a suspicious buzzing noise made it clear he was up to more than just that.

"What do you have?" she asked as she approached him. "Why is your mouth making that noise?" she added. The sound of buzzing is unavoidable.

Levy sheepishly looked away, glancing occasionally towards his owner with a guilty look on his face. After multiple attempts, she managed to get him to open his mouth and release the cause of the buzzing—a large cicada, which dropped to the floor.

Cicadas themselves are seen in places annually, with some species emerging every year, but this year saw a huge increase. Magicicadas are a North American genus of the bugs, which emerge from underground at intervals of 13 or 17 years, depending on various factors.

This summer saw the Brood 10 colony emerge after a 17-year-long hibernation—and they did so in trillions. The bugs crawled out in mid-May to June, and have a four-to-six-week lifespan above ground. During this time, they mate—the noise of which can hit 100 decibels—and lay their eggs before finally dying, renewing the cycle.

The video, which garnered nearly 3 million views, can also be seen in full here.

Cicadas might not be pleasant for many, but they're actually edible for humans and this year saw a huge influx of cicada treats available, like chocolate and pizza.

The bugs are also edible for dogs too, luckily for Levy who appears to regularly capture them in his mouth. @sassafras_007's TikTok account shows a total of three videos in which he is ordered to drop a bug from his mouth.

Although cicadas are not poisonous or toxic for dogs, the American Kennel Club does not advise they regularly snack on them. The exoskeleton shells of the bugs can be hard for dogs to digest and can irritate the stomach lining, leading to inflammation and stomach ache.

If a dog has shellfish allergies, cicadas can trigger a similar reaction too, as the two are biologically similar.

With that in mind, the owner's initiative to demand that Levy drop the bug was the right one, but the whole saga made for an entertaining video.

"I love how guilty he looks," wrote one user.

"I'm in tears," added another. "When its mouth opens and the scream intensifies."

Cicada in a child's hand
A child holds up a cicada in Alexandria, Virginia 14 May 2004. Seventeen years on and the cicadas have emerged again, as seen in a viral video. Getty Images