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The Mystery Of Scotland’s ‘Dog Suicide Bridge’

by : Cameron Frew on : 31 Oct 2021 09:27
The Mystery Of Scotland's 'Dog Suicide Bridge'Alamy

Over the years, hundreds of pets have leaped off Scotland’s ‘dog suicide bridge’ – and there’s no solid explanation as to why.

Paranormal experts have long discussed the possibility of dogs being able to sense the presence of a ghost. While there’s no evidence to back this up, just like there’s no scientific proof that ghosts exist at all, the strange happenings at Overtoun Bridge in Dumbarton have spooked local residents for decades.

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Ever since the 1950s, the bridge has seen multiple reports of dogs falling or jumping. It’s a 50ft drop with nothing but jagged rocks below, yet multiple walkers have recalled their dogs becoming ‘possessed’ and going straight off the side, with many falling to their deaths.

Overtoun Bridge. (Alamy)Alamy

As earlier reported by The New York Times, locals believe around 300 dogs have jumped off the bridge, while tabloids estimate closer to 600, with 50 dying as a result of the fall.

Lottie Mackinnon recounted her border collie Bonnie becoming ‘possessed by a strange energy’ before running and jumping ‘right off the parapet’. Miraculously, she survived.

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Back in 2014, Alice Trevorrow was walking her springer spaniel Cassie near the bridge. ‘I had parked up and as she is so obedient I didn’t put her lead on… me and my son walked toward Cassie, who was staring at something above the bridge… she definitely saw something that made her jump. There is something sinister going on. It was so out of character for her,’ she said.

Overtoun Bridge. (Alamy)Alamy
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The unnerving accounts have led to the location being branded the ‘Dog Suicide Bridge’. Even today, there’s no firm reason as to why the dogs are jumping; some believe it to be the smell of mink and other animals, others have proposed some form of paranormal activity in the area.

Bob and Melissa Hill, the owners of Overtoun House, have seen a number of dogs becoming perturbed near the bridge and eventually jumping off. ‘The dogs catch the scent of mink, pine martens or some other mammal and then they will jump up on the wall of the bridge. And because it’s tapered, they will just topple over,’ Bob said in 2019.

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Overtoun Bridge. (Alamy)Alamy

Many are still convinced a ghost is to blame; namely, the White Lady of Overtoun. ‘The lady lived alone in grief for more than 30 years after her husband died in 1908. Her ghost has been lurking around here ever since. She’s been sighted in windows and walking around the grounds,’ local resident Marion Murray told The Times.

While some sceptics think this sounds barking mad, Hill conceded the grounds are ‘more spiritual than other parts… many people don’t believe in the story until they see it for themselves, and even then they don’t think it will happen to them’. The mystery continues to this day.

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Cameron Frew

Entertainment Editor at UNILAD. 2001: A Space Odyssey is the best film ever made, and Warrior is better than Rocky. That's all you need to know.

Topics: Animals, Dogs, ghosts, Scotland

Credits

The New York Times
  1. The New York Times

    ‘Dog Suicide Bridge’: Why Do So Many Pets Keep Leaping Into a Scottish Gorge?