Fake News: This Dog Did NOT Save Its Owner When His House Was Burning

Fact Check

  • by: Ryan Cooper
Fake News: This Dog Did NOT Save Its Owner When His House Was Burning

Did a dog featured in a Facebook post save its owner when his house was burning? No, that's not true: The story is not true and exploits a dog with an autoimmune disease for social media likes and engagements.

The claim originated from a post (archived here) published by "I love dogs" on December 13, 2019. It opened:

This dog saved its owner when his house is burning😞
Loyalty has no title🐶

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:

The post claims the dog heroically saved his owner's life when his house was burning, and it suggested the dog sustained severe injuries.

However, users pointed out that the dog named Phoenix actually has an autoimmune disease. One post pleads with users not to share other fake posts about the dog:

Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 1.42.30 PM.png

Local media reports said Phoenix was left abandoned in Collinsville, Oklahoma, in November of 2019. At last report, he was getting care at an animal clinic in Owasso. The news story helped raise more than $12,000 in donations for the dog's vet bills.

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  Ryan Cooper

Ryan Cooper, a staff writer and fact-checker for Lead Stories, is the former Director of Programming at CNN International, where he helped shape the network's daily newscasts broadcast to more than 280 million households around the world. He was based at the network's Los Angeles Bureau. There, he managed the team responsible for a three-hour nightly program, Newsroom LA.

Formerly, he worked at the headquarters in Atlanta, and he spent four years at the London bureau. An award-winning producer, Cooper oversaw the network's Emmy Award-winning coverage of the uprising in Egypt in 2011. He also served as a supervising producer during much of the network's live reporting on the Israel-Hezbollah conflict in 2006, for which CNN received an Edward R. Murrow Award.

Read more about or contact Ryan Cooper

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