Viral tearjerker story of puppy thrown into Rock River debunked by Janesville police

It was a story with all the makings of a heartwarming family flick: a heartless owner throws a cute puppy off a bridge into a river, but the brave pup somehow manages to swim shore, where a good Samaritan finds him and turns him over to the Humane Society.

The story also caught the attention of several television news outlets, who reported on the poor puppy’s plight and the search for the heartless person who tried to drown him.

There was just one problem with the story: it wasn’t true.

Janesville police said Friday that the story was fabricated so the family that owned the 10-month-old mixed breed puppy wouldn’t have to pay the $75 surrender fee to the Humane Society animal shelter.

“Since (the incident) was never originally reported to police, an officer obtained the name of the person who turned the dog in and told the story of the puppy being thrown into the river,” said Sgt. Dean Sukus of the Janesville Police Department.

“After interviewing that person and other members of the household, it was discovered the story was a fabrication to avoid paying a fee to the Humane Society to surrender the dog.”

The dog’s owner faces no criminal charges since the dog wasn’t actually harmed and the owner only reported the false story to the Humane Society and not the police, Sukus said.

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