Shelter Dog Meal Donation Count:

Learn More

Dangerous Dog Treats Filled With Fish Hooks Discovered On Trails, Officials Warn

Written by: Russel Moneva
Russel Moneva, a Viral Content writer at iHeartDogs, finds joy in both crafting engaging content and pursuing his passion for basketball and fitness whenever he's not immersed in his work.Read more
| Published on May 14, 2024

A critical safety alert has been issued for pet owners and outdoor enthusiasts in eastern Pennsylvania following a troubling discovery on the Appalachian Trail. Authorities have found several dog treats that were deliberately embedded with sharp fishhooks. These dangerous items were scattered across a frequently visited section of the trail, located northwest of Allentown in Washington Township. The alarming find was made this past Sunday, prompting immediate action from local wildlife officials who are now urging the public to exercise increased caution while visiting the area.


State Game Warden Dustin Stoner, representing the Pennsylvania Game Commission, initially disclosed these findings to HuffPost. According to Stoner, the treats were spotted by vigilant hikers along the North Trail Loop that leads to the George W. Outerbridge shelter, an area well-known among hiking communities and often frequented by families with pets.

Despite the distressing nature of the discovery, there have thankfully been no reports of injuries to any pets or local wildlife as a result of these tampered treats. Following the discovery, a comprehensive search was conducted by the game wardens in the surrounding areas, which fortunately did not reveal any additional contaminated treats. “Our teams are on high alert, and while we hope that no more treats are found, we continue to urge the public to be cautious,” stated Warden Stoner.

In light of these events, the Pennsylvania Game Commission has taken proactive steps to investigate the situation thoroughly. They have requested that anyone who comes across any unusual or suspicious items, or any deceased animals in the vicinity, to contact them immediately. This will enable a swift examination to determine if the cause of death could be related to this incident.

The disturbing discovery is being treated as an isolated case so far. The National Park Service, having been notified of the situation, is keeping a watchful eye and has not reported similar incidents in other areas. Nevertheless, the investigation remains a priority to ensure the safety of trail users and their pets. “Identifying and prosecuting the individual(s) responsible for this reprehensible act is imperative. We are dedicated to ensuring the safety of our community and its pets,” added Stoner.


Authorities are reaching out to the public for assistance and are asking anyone who might have photographic evidence or any information that could be pertinent to the case to contact the Pennsylvania Game Commission at 833-PGC-WILD.

“Public participation is crucial in these investigations. Even the smallest piece of information provided by a trail user could lead to significant breakthroughs in our case,” Warden Stoner highlighted.

This incident serves as a stark reminder of the potential dangers that can lurk in public spaces and the importance of community vigilance and cooperation in maintaining the safety of popular recreational areas.

Click the video below to watch this incredible story!

Please ‘SHARE’ to pass on this story to a friend or family member