Canines are wise to the world in many ways. Dogs can sense weather patterns before a storm and are sensitive to human emotions. But are dogs also sensitive to the supernatural?
The Dog Suicide Bridge has caused over 600 dogs to leap to their death and experts have no idea why. There are a few theories, but none of them fully explain why dogs are compelled to jump the the four-foot wall 50 feet to the rocks and shallow water below. There could be an optical illusion the dogs experience, and the sound of the water bellow disorients them and drowns out their senses. However, that does not seem too different from other bridges where dogs are not suddenly suicidal.
Is there something there that urges the dogs to jump? Some survive and a few have been seen survive, crawl back to the bridge, and jump again.
Overtoun Bridge is the actual name of the bridge completed in 1895 and it is near Milton, a small village in Dumbarton, Scotland. Dogs have become mysteriously suicidal at this spot since the 50s and picked up in the 60s when about 12-15 dogs jump annually.
This occurs so often, that official signs are in place to warn dog owners:
Dr. David Sands has a Ph.D. in animal behavior says it might be pure curiosity that kills the dogs. That, and the smell of mink. He said that his own senses were heightened upon visiting the bridge, and it is natural to want to look over to see what is below. Do dogs simply just want to see what is down there? Sands conducted a study including the type of long-nosed dogs with a strong sense of smell that have been found at the bridge and found that they are overwhelmingly attracted to the scent of mink, which populate the surrounding terrain. Watch this short doc of his research below:
But does this fully explain the haunted bridge? Some people feel the bridge is haunted by ‘The White Lady of Overtoun’, a spirit who is said in this creepy gothic castle nearby called the Overtoun House. The bridge was built by Lord Overtourn, who lived there, a philanthropist and liberal politician who had the bridge built so that carriages could access his estate.
People say this lady has been seen here for more than 100 years. Is she a bitter cat lady ghost? It sucks to be stuck in this creepy castle for more than a century, but what’s her beef with dogs?
It is also reported that humans are affected by the bridge as well. Paul Owens, a teacher of Religion and Philosophy said, “I was standing there when I felt a firm, hard prod that felt like a finger. Something or someone was trying to push me over the bridge too, just like the dogs.”
In the 90s a crazed man threw his infant son over the bridge and then attempted to jump himself.
It is tragic to lose your pet, especially if the pup willingly ends their own life! Hopefully the curse on this haunted bridge will end soon.