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Dog Park Alert: Nails in Cheese

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ATTENTION ALL DOG OWNERS AND DOG LOVERS!!!
Nails in Cheese - New Trend at Dog Parks

Netlore Archive: Wall photo circulating on Facebook purports to reveal a 'new trend' developing in dog parks: handfuls of cheese and ham studded with nails for the purpose of injuring pets.

Image source: unknown, circulating online

Description: Viral image / Rumor
Circulating since: July 2011
Status: Overblown / Outdated (see details below)


Example #1:
As posted on Facebook, Oct. 3, 2011:

New trend at dog parks, nails in pieces of cheese, if you take your dogs to dog parks, please be careful!!


Example #2:
As posted on Facebook, Oct. 3, 2011:

New trend at dog parks, nails in pieces of cheese, if you take your dogs to dog parks, please be careful!! The picture with the cheese and nails was emailed to me by someone saying they found cheese like this in parks in Chicago and Ma.


Example #3:
As posted on Facebook, Oct. 3, 2011:

DOG PARK ALERT: We have received two notices. (1) Nails wrapped in cheese at dog parks in Chicago and Massachusetts (see pic). (2) from some friends that in Augusta Maine dog park, antifreeze is being found in doggie water bowls. Please beware and be careful and PLEASE SHARE and spread the word. sigh


Example #4:
As posted on Facebook, Oct. 3, 2011:

ATTENTION ALL DOG OWNERS AND DOG LOVERS!!! Some psychos in Tucson are discarding pieces of cheese with nails stuck in them - they're being thrown in peoples yards, alleys, parks, etc. PLEASE keep your dog near you, watch them when you're out on a walk and check your yard DAILY. As a dog lover, the last thing I would want is for anybodys dog to be seriously injured because of some sick sick people doing some shit like this. Yes, this is real. Yes, I'm livid. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE re-post this and spread the word



Analysis: A word to the wise: one image does not constitute evidence of a "trend," no matter how many times it's reposted on Facebook.

The above photo originally appeared on the Facebook page of Mascotas en Adopcion Argentina, a non-profit pet adoption agency in Buenos Aires, on July 24, 2011. The posting (since deleted) warned dog owners to be careful when taking their pets to Parque Centenario (Centennial Park) in Buenos Aires because pieces of ham and cheese studded with nails (see photo) were allegedly found in a kennel there.

A brief article (in Spanish) published the following day on the Buenos Aires news website Perfil.com essentially repeated the same information, citing the aforementioned Facebook page as its source.

Two months later that same image was spreading rapidly on English-language Facebook pages with the added claim that the incident took place in North America. Variants said nail-studded cheese had been found in Chicago, Tucson, and Massachusetts, to name three examples, but given the lack of specificity — we're never told which dog parks this supposedly happened in, or even, in the case of Massachusetts, which city — there's little reason to grant them credence.


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Sources and further reading:

Hallan Comida Para Perros con Clavos en Parque Centenario
Perfil.com, 25 July 2011

Facebook Rumor Warns of Nails in Cheese at Dog Parks
MyFox Houston, 3 October 2011

Cheesy Dog Park Hoax in Regina
CKOM News, 3 October 2011

Nails in Pieces of Cheese Left at Dog Parks? A Facebook Scare Ignites
Sophos.com, 3 October 2011


Last updated 04/28/13

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