FACT CHECK: Did The Washington Post Publish This Article About A ‘Homophobic Dog’?

Hannah Hudnall | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows an article from The Washington Post titled, “This dog is the new face of online homophobia.”

Verdict: False

The image is digitally fabricated. There is no record of the outlet publishing such an article.

Fact Check:

Photos of a white dachshund named Whitney Chewston have been posted to the internet with homophobic phrases superimposed onto them, according to the website Know Your Meme. The first iteration of the trend appeared in March 2021, the website reported.

An image shared on Facebook, garnering over 790 reactions, appears to show a screenshot of a Washington Post article on the dog titled, “This dog is the new face of online homophobia.”

The image was retweeted by Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ press secretary Christina Pushaw. “More cutting edge journalism from the 49 year old Washington Post activist infamous for showing up masked on random people’s doorsteps & sliding into the DMs of tiktok teenagers,” reads the tweet.

The image is digitally fabricated. No such article appears on the outlet’s website or verified social media accounts. There is likewise no mention of the alleged article on the dog’s official Instagram account.

“This is not a story published by The Washington Post,” said Molly Gannon Conway, a spokesperson for the outlet, in an email to Check Your Fact.

A reverse image search revealed the fabricated screenshot first appeared on Twitter May 15. The user published a follow-up tweet May 17 identifying the image as satirical, writing, “It has come to my attention that Ron DeSantis’ press secretary has stolen my edit out of an inability to differentiate between satire and reality.”

Taylor Lorenz, the alleged author of this article, dismissed it as a fake on Twitter, commenting, “This meme is funny but sadly I’ve been booked up on bigger news, this screenshot is fake.” (RELATED: Did The Washington Post Publish An Article About China ‘Forcing’ New Trees To Exist?)

Update: This article has been updated with the response from The Washington Post. 

Hannah Hudnall

Fact Check Reporter