FACT CHECK: Did Pete Buttigieg Post A Picture Of Himself Holding A Rifle And Standing Next To A Group Of Dogs?

Trevor Schakohl | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook allegedly shows a tweet from Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg that includes a photo of him holding a rifle next to a group of dogs.

Verdict: False

There is no record of Buttigieg sending such a tweet. The image included in the post is altered.

Fact Check:

The image shared on Facebook appears to show an April 8 tweet from Buttigieg’s verified Twitter account. “Time for ‘Therapy’!!!” reads the alleged tweet, which includes an image of the transportation secretary in a military uniform, holding a rifle while standing next to a group of dogs.

“This is so unnecessarily ominous,” reads the Facebook image’s caption. “Why did he post this!?” The tweet in the photo appears to have been liked over 1,900 times and retweeted over 490 times. (RELATED: Did Joe Biden Say Veterans ‘Get Enough Handouts’?)

The tweet is digitally fabricated. No such post can be found on either of Buttigieg’s verified Twitter accounts or on archived versions of his accounts from April 8. There is likewise nothing resembling the tweet on any of his other social media accounts. The fabricated tweet may be a reference to the debunked rumor that Buttigieg was arrested as a teenager for killing dogs.

A reverse image search revealed the image of the group of dogs originated with a 2015 post by Hawaiian dog obedience training company Barkhaus. The image of Buttigieg in full military attire originated from a tweet he published in March 2018. Notably, there are no dogs visible in the photo.

The photo was also included in a 2019 ABC News article, which dated the photo to 2014. Buttigieg joined the Navy Reserve in 2009 and was deployed to Afghanistan in 2014, according to the outlet.

Trevor Schakohl

Fact Check Reporter
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