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Do Dogs Commit Suicide?
In the past six months five dogs have fallen to their death off a bridge in Dumbarton, Scotland. This fact does not seem to be disputed. What is controversial is whether or not the dogs fell because they committed suicide. Or did they think they saw something and accidentally leapt? In the most recent case a woman claims that she was out walking her dog when it suddenly ran away from her "vaulted over the parapet and plunged 40ft to its death."

Some animal behaviorists are dismissing the notion that suicide was the cause of the dogs' deaths, arguing that dogs never commit suicide. Personally, I'm not sure what to think. I did once hear about a dog who was so despondent after its master died that it walked out to some train tracks and lay there until a train ran it over. However, I'll concede that this story may be an urban legend because I can't remember where I heard it. And I doubt that five dogs in a row would commit suicide in the same place. However, this bridge in Dumbarton does have a spooky history. In 1994 a guy threw his two-week-old son off of it, believing that the child was the Antichrist. So believers in the supernatural are having a field day with this case.
Categories: Animals, Death
Posted by Alex on Mon Mar 07, 2005
Comments (96)
More from the Hoax Museum Archives:
Someone asked if it's illegal to give a dog prozac- actually I've heard of vets perscribing it!

Also my boyfriend's aunt had a beagle that hung itself on her back porch one Easter.
Posted by Katey  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  03:30 PM
Well, you know how depression goes up on holidays.. 😊
Posted by winona  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  04:04 PM
;o; awww....Those poor doggies! I just feel for them....>_< but if they chose to die on their own will then....I guess there's nothing we can do about it.
Poor doggies ...
and i do believe animals will commit suicide. remember the love bird stories? If one bird dies, the other one just wilts away ....same logic.
Humans aren't that different from animals, in fact, we ARE animals. so what's so surprising if they get depressed too?
Posted by Mika  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  05:49 PM
But, besides ill treatment, what would drive a dog to suicide? I mean, the Old Mother Hubbard story is pretty depressing, empty cupboard and all that...
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  06:03 PM
plus, the : Doggy-Denigration language thing, as in: "Work like a dog", "You dog", "Dirty Dog", "Egg-suckin' dog"... you get the picture...
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  06:06 PM
Low self-esteem might explain the whole Crotch-sniffin', ball-licking thing too, eh? Same thing happened to my cousin.
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  06:09 PM
perhaps... they saw a bone in the water, and mistook it to be in the mouth of their own reflection, and, thinking it was another dog, dove in out of envy
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  06:12 PM
perhaps... they finally realized how far they had evolved from the simple, free ranging canines of eons past, never to run with the pack, to hunt, to howl at The Moon...
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  06:15 PM
perhaps... they knew that the time for change was long past, that they were forever locked in a role of subservience, no longer true sons of Canus
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  06:18 PM
or maybe they were just crazy dogs... Dogs ARE crazy... ever try and talk Politics with one? They get all mad and foam at the mouth- like Republicans
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  06:20 PM
>>>Oh, c'mon, this isn't suicide; the dogs are just stupid, or clumsy.<<<

Yeah, but the dogs leapt over the railing and off the bridge. That goes beyond just being clumsy and stupid, it takes an effort and an act of will. Lots of people are clumsy and stupid, but the great majority of them somehow manage not to deliberately jump off bridges....
Posted by Barghest  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  07:21 PM
We used to have to drive up a single paved lane to our housing area at Edgewood Arsenal, MD. On spring & summer evenings, I would encounter a family of Boobies (they're birds), that would swoop down out of their nests to attack my approaching car. Of course, they were just trying to defend their young, but we used to call them "suicide birds", because they would fly underneath the front of the car, right in front of the moving tires, squawking their damn fool heads off. They came really close, but we never saw a dead one.
Posted by stork  in  the spiracles of space  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  07:48 PM
Okay, here's my take on this. I read 9 news stories on the net. Granted, they were mostly people just paraphrasing the original.
Nary a picture (except a dog with a fake knife through his head) was to be found.
Every one of the articles mentioned Overtoun House (
All but two mentioned the guy who is trying to turn this house into a religious retreat.
This started the gears grinding a little...

Now get this... Six months ago, (

Does it appear to anyone else that this guy might have something to do with the stories? Wouldn't it be so much easier to raise money if the christians worldwide knew of you, instead of just people in Scotland?

Not saying this is what happened, but hey, ya never know. Bagpipe music'll drive ya nuts in so many ways...
Posted by Rod  in  the land of smarties.  on  Tue Mar 08, 2005  at  11:26 PM
God, you should try living here in Edinburgh where, all summer, you can hear a set of bagpipes at all times of the day, no matter your location.
It's all the bloody tourists' fault.

Rod, I'm with you. He sounds fishy.

Although I wonder what suicidal dogs will do for his... religion.
Posted by Boo  in  The Land of the Haggii...  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  02:21 AM
I slooshied about this odin raskazz where some lewdies I used to know used to have dva pet rats. The dva rats were best droogs. They were such horrorshow droogs, in fact, that when odin of them snuffed it, the other odin somehow mananged to razrez its ookoes off of its gulliver! And if a rat can commit suicide, then so can a dog.
Posted by John  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  05:34 AM
Whales beach themselves sometimes, and no one knows why. I do know it happens to dolphins sometimes-they hunt in shallow water and a wave carries them to land without them expecting it. But larger whales are a mystery. They have no reason to be so close to land.

Also, there was this aquarium in the 70s that had a great white shark. It went crazy trying to escape and kept bashing its head against the walls of the tank until it died.
Posted by Laser Potato  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  08:23 AM
...Hairy, you need a disclaimer for bagpipes. Bagpipes used to be people too!
Posted by Maegan  in  Tampa, FL - USA  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  08:29 AM
Maybe the dogs are aiming for the guy who's opening the "retreat" and just keep missing.

Maybe they know something we don't... like ouch, the ground is hard and people don't stay in the same spot for long (oh yeah, we already know that). Maybe these are brave scientist dogs, testing the limits of canine knowledge, or searching for the mythical "Lost Boner of Batman". They think they see it, and, well, you know uncontrollable dogs get when excited...

"Rowf! Ratran's Roner! Rowf! Must get it!"
Posted by Rod  in  the land of smarties.  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  09:36 AM
Posted by Nymph  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  11:22 AM
It's the "language" created for "A Clockwork Orange".

Check it out here:
Posted by Rod  in  the land of smarties.  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  11:35 AM
I knew another dog that jumped...or at least I knew his owners.

They lived on the 2nd or 3rd story and the dog broke through the screen. Dog saw them leaving so he jumped down after them. Needless to say the dalmation in question did not have supernatural powers and proceeded to fall and break all four of its legs. It did survive.

Though following the owners is probably a good theory, I'm sure that bagpipes were undoubtebly playing in the background.
Posted by Gentropy  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  11:50 AM
Yes, and we all know which guy who lives down the hill was playing them...
Posted by Rod  in  the land of smarties.  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  12:29 PM
I saw a cat jump out a third story window in 1973 in the lower East Village. Three stories, straight down, into a baked dirt parking lot. And no, it didn't land on it's feet. But that might have had something to do with the LSD it had eaten about an hour before. No, I didn't do it.
Posted by stork  in  the spiracles of space  on  Wed Mar 09, 2005  at  06:21 PM

I still think that since there is only 1 witnessed case that it could have been a complete accident. This is what leash laws are for.
Posted by Maegan  in  Tampa, FL - USA  on  Thu Mar 10, 2005  at  08:42 AM
Hey, if someone went and "Bob Barkered" your fun bits, wouldn't your mental state take a turn for the worse.

Now that I got that comment out of the way....
My mother-in-law had a greyhound that committed something close to suicide. It got running up to full speed (which is FAST for a greyhound) and ran head first into a closed garage door. Needless to say the door won.
Posted by alteregogi  on  Thu Mar 10, 2005  at  10:14 AM
That wasn't suicide, that was just an example of why dogs don't get to drive.
Posted by Rod  in  the land of smarties.  on  Thu Mar 10, 2005  at  10:24 AM
Well not dog suicides but i've heard of bunnies commiting suicide! 🐛
Posted by morgan  on  Thu Jun 16, 2005  at  03:01 PM
In what way, Morgan?0
Posted by Boo  in  The Land of the Haggii...  on  Thu Jun 16, 2005  at  03:11 PM
online gambling
Posted by abc  on  Thu Jun 23, 2005  at  01:30 PM
i dont think dogs do commit suicide but they still should gerta drivers license first they are not stupid or clumsy research has shown that dogs are as smart as humand and not anydummer then a human can get in fact they are one of the most smart animals in the world so barghest get you facts right and if dogs are stupid and clummsie4 as they are as smart as humans that means that you are stupid and clumsy dosnt it
Posted by jacinta  on  Sun Jul 17, 2005  at  05:05 PM
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