28 Nov 2011 - Article No: 1443

70 Dead Dogs from Chicken Jerky from China? - Facebook Rumour


It was on Fox news earlier that 70 dogs have died as a result of eating chicken jerky treats made from chicken that has come from China. Kingdom Pets brand from Costco is one of them. Also certain Blue Buffalo brand pet foods have a recall for the same thing. Please re-post and make sure all your doggie friends are aware of this....


This warning is spreading like wildfire across social networking sites like Facebook. The message - which warns of canine chicken jerky treats from China - is based on a real story that involves a rise of canine illnesses, but like with all cases of Facebook "Chinese" whispers (no pun intended) the resulting warning is actually more fiction than fact.

Firstly, the "70 dead dogs" from the warning do not exist. 70 seems a curiously arbitrary amount since we have no idea where the number came from. No FDA reports have mentioned 70 at all, let alone 70 fatalities.
Thus the claim that Fox news reported that 70 dogs had died is of course a complete fabrication as well - additionally the mention of two brand names being involved is also a completely fictitious statement - neither company have been linked to these illnesses in any way.

The fact is that the FDA (who are investigating this issue) have released little information at this point. At the time of writing, the latest FDA statement shows they are still in the early stages of their investigation, with no conclusive evidence yet that the rise in canine illnesses has anything to do with chicken products from China at all!

Dog owners are simply advised to keep an eye on their canine pets and watch for any symptoms including decreased appetite; decreased activity; vomiting; diarrhea, sometimes with blood; increased water consumption and/or increased urination. If symptoms occur, contact your vet.

Users are advised not to circulate the above message and concerned dog owners should stay tuned to any future FDA statements.

Also users should note that a similar issue occured in 2007/08 and when researching sources on the Internet not to get confused with older (hence irrelevant) webpages.

UPDATE: Blue Buffalo, one of the companies named in this innacurate warning, have released a statement in which they state they do not even use meat sourced from China. Read it here.




Social media and the Internet is rife with rumour, misinformation, propaganda and untruth. It is like this because people can be irresponsible with what information they choose to share.

Our community works hard to try and debunk and assist in as many cases as possible, as well as teach people how to share responsibly. We believe it is important that anyone who uses the Internet be able to identify false rumours and fully understands the possible consequences of spreading false information.

If you are interested in this, feel free to read our two-part blog. Part 1 deals with how to spot and debunk Internet rumours and Part 2 deals with the reasons why you should never circulate false information.

Additionally if you have fallen for this rumour or have Facebook friends that have, you can join our growing Facebook page here or sign up to our mailing list here.

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