White powder used to kill dogs? - Internet/Facebook Rumour

21 Sep 2014 - Article No: 1881. Filed under: General | Internet/Facebook Rumour

A warning (below) is spreading that warns readers of a white powder at the base of trees or posts as it causes internal haemorrhaging in dogs. The warning is circulating in both Spanish and English.

Warnings about a trend in mystery poisons or malicious traps designed to kill man’s best friend are a common type of rumour on Facebook, but usually turn out to be either hoaxes or relatively isolated incidents.

FRIENDS WITH DOGS, if you see trees or posts with white powder like this BEWARE keep you animals far away, people with dogs that have smelled and licked their noses afterwards which had caused internal hemorrhage and die within 2/3 days. Please share and make everyone aware

Whilst we do indeed recommend that dog owners are always on the look-out for suspicious substances on the ground (though we imagine responsible dog owners do not need to be reminded of this!) we have to concede that warnings such as this are only really useful when they have been time-stamped and mention a specific location where this particular trend is allegedly occurring, and the above message fails to mention either, limiting how effective is can really serve as a warning.

Of course it is entirely possible for a white powder to be dangerous to dogs. Rat poisons or industrial strength cleaners for example can both be very dangerous to a dog and either can take the form of a white powder.

However we were unable to find any trending or prolific crime reported on the Internet that involved white powder being distributed to kill dogs. More often than not white powder on the floor is used for more innocuous reasons such as ant powder (which would not usually be strong enough to be detrimental to dogs) or – as a recent case in the UK highlighted – flour used by jogging groups to map out routes.

With all this said there have been incidents where people have indeed tried to lay traps for dogs in a bid to poison them (such as a case in Spain where rat poison was left, or a case in the USA where poison laced meatballs were left) and it is not out of the question that such traps could involve a white powder.

Taking this into account it would be the best practise to ensure your dog does not lick or come into contact with white powder or – for that matter – any suspicious substance and if they do then always be on the watch out for abnormal behaviour.

However this information can be relayed between dog owners in a more effective manner than a vague, alarmist warning that does not mention a location or date.

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