“Man’s best friend” is a popular phrase used to describe domestic dogs referring to their close relationship, loyalty, friendship and companionship with humans. There are many real life stories about dog’s loyalty and love towards its master that we come across on social media and mainstream media.
We found one such story trending on social media, where it was claimed that a dog saddened by the death of his master, had decided to make its final resting place above the masters’ grave and eventually died at the same place. However, we found that the narrative was not true. Let’s check out the realty of this story.
Social Media Posts:
A widely circulated social media post claimed that a dog, continued to return to the grave of its master and dug a hole above the grave and eventually settled there without any food turning it into its final resting place. The full narration is given below.
“A man died and let his dog be cared for by his son …
Surprised his son looking for the dog does not find him, the dog was gone…
A few days later, he is warned from the cemetery that a dog is digging a hole above his father’s grave…
He went to the cemetery and took the dog…
On the second day the dog leaves again … The escape of the dog continued several times, until the son was convinced to leave the dog in his father’s grave … he came every day and brought him food and water, the dog did not eat became savage and did not allow anyone to approach the grave … he lived a week until he died over the grave of his owner…
“The dog is the only creature on earth that loves you more than it loves itself“
The image accompanying the post showed how the dog had dug a hole below a gravestone. The narration highlights the strong connection between the dog and its master.
The post had been widely shared by number of social media users around the world as seen below as well.
Let’s check how much truth does this story hold.
We checked for similar posts and noticed the earliest version of social media posts with the claim and the image dated back to 2015.
However, upon closer inspection of the image, it revealed that the gravestone indicated the person had died in 1991. Hence it’s hardly possible that the dog who had made a pit under the tombstone after 24 years, was really the pet of the deceased person.
We ran a Google Reverse Image search of the viral image and found number of content about the dog under the gravestone image. German dog rescue group Tierjammer had posted about the incident back in April 2015, as seen in below album.
Google Translation of the album description read as below.
“Sometimes you just want to cry and pull the covers over your head…
These pictures are symbolic and represent the suffering and misery of street animals in Serbia.
Abandoned, abandoned, hungry and pregnant this female dog was left with only one way: dig a hole in the ground under a tombstone and give birth to her babies there.
The only protection you have from the cold at night and the already very warm sun during the day.
Rain fills the hole and there is nothing for mom to eat there either. If she is discovered, her children will be lost…
Please help the mother with her children so that they can be accommodated, vaccinations, a later castration for mom and regular food and a little attention. She doesn’t expect anything, but you can give her a little security.”
Several media outlets had shared this story as well and thedodo.com, a digital brand related to animal well–being had posted the story as seen below, on how the female dog along with puppies were rescued in time thanks to a dog rescuer.
The dog rescuer from Serbia was Vesna Mihajloski, who is unfortunately no longer with us according to her Facebook profile, had posted a series of image of the German shepherd dog and her cubs before rescuing them on 20th April 2015. One of the images is seen below.
A video titled “People Said This Dog Was Guarding Her Owner’s Grave, But One Rescuer Uncovered A Stunning Secret” describes how dog rescuer Vesna Mihajloski came to know that the female dog had been protecting her four cubs under the tombstone with a series of images.
Just like this story, we have also debunked a few such fake stories before. You can check out one of those below.
Even though there have been many instances of dogs guarding their masters’ grave, however it is clear from the investigation that the image viral on social media is not one of such instances.
The image of a dog in a pit below a gravestone, was not an instance of a loyal dog making it the final resting place in loving memory of its master.
The incident happened in April 2015 in Serbia, 24 years after the death of the person as mentioned in the tombstone. The female dog, most likely a stray dog had dug a hole under a gravestone and had given birth to its 4 puppies. The dog was staying inside this den in order to protect her new born cubs.
A dog rescuer from Serbia called Vesna Mihajloski noticed the plight of the female dog and her cubs and rescued them in time.
Title:Is this a Dog guarding over its Master’s Grave? Find out the Truth!Fact Check By: Sahan Perera