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Home Misleading Does a Viral Image Depict a Monkey Saving a Puppy From An Explosion?

Does a Viral Image Depict a Monkey Saving a Puppy From An Explosion?

by Brett M. Christensen

This story was first published on July 3, 2013


Circulating message claims that an attached picture shows a monkey saving a small puppy from a factory explosion in China. 

Brief Analysis

The claims in the message are untrue. The picture circulated in different contexts for several years before the explosion referenced in the message. Earlier descriptions claim that the monkey was saving the dog from a tsunami or other natural disaster. Some versions claim that the monkey was stealing the dog. However, Dani Weiss, the photographer who took the picture, explains that the monkey was tethered and simply carrying the puppy around and playing with him.


During a dangerous factory explosion that occurred in China, a Monkey was recorded on the camera saving a puppy from the explosion site, He held the dog as he ran out of the factory. If animals can instinctively show compassion and kindness to each other, So can we.

Monkey holding a puppy

Image credit: Dani Weiss Photography


Detailed Analysis

According to a message that circulates via social media, an attached image depicts a monkey saving a puppy in the aftermath of a factory explosion in China. The message suggests that, if animals can instinctively show compassion for others, humans should do likewise. 

However, the description that comes with the image is not accurate. The explosion mentioned in the message apparently references a massive factory blast that occurred in eastern China in 2010. The above version of the monkey message began circulating soon after this blast.

But, in fact, the very same image has circulated since at least 2006 with a host of alternative descriptions. Some versions claim that the monkey was stealing the puppy, perhaps with nefarious and violent motives. Others claim that the monkey was saving the pup from different natural and man-made disasters, including the Japanese tsunami and various floods, fires and explosions.

The photo, along with another shot depicting the same two animals appears in an album on the Dani Weiss Photography website. In response to my query about the image, Dani noted:

Yes I took this photo. This image was taken in a village in the Hilltribe county in Thailand. The monkey was tied up around the waist. He basically was carrying around the puppy and playing with him. Not much more. It looks bizarre but nothing awful seemed to be happening. Never understood why the monkey was tied up.

Thus, while the picture is certainly an engaging one, it does not depict a monkey saving a puppy from an explosion in China or any other disaster. It should also be noted that unscrupulous like-farmers have used the image and false description as a means of amassing likes for their bogus Facebook Pages.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,