Ghost Stories

Black Dog of Hanging Hills

A Connecticut Ghost Story 

retold by

S. E. Schlosser

He smiled as he sipped at his coffee. It had been an excellent hike. He was glad his friend had recommended coming to the Hanging Hills in Connecticut; not the first place that had come to his mind when considering a vacation. But it was beautiful here. When his friend arrived tomorrow they would tackle some of the more challenging terrain.

“Did you have a nice hike?” asked the innkeeper as she refilled his cup.

“Yes indeed. I had some unexpected company,” he said with a smile.

“Really? I thought you were the only one crazy enough to go hiking in the rain,” she teased.

“It was a little black dog,” he said. “Cute fellow. Followed me all the way up the mountain and down again.”

He looked up from his coffee to see the innkeeper’s face had gone pale.

“A black dog?” she asked. “That’s not good.”

“Why not?”

“We have a saying around here,” she replied. “’And if a man shall meet the Black Dog once, it shall be for joy; and if twice, it shall be for sorrow; and the third time, he shall die.’” He laughed. “That’s just superstition.”

“That’s what Mr. Pynchon said. He saw the black dog twice. The second time he saw the dog, the friend he was climbing with fell to his death. And later, Mr. Pynchon decided to climb the same mountain, and he died too. Everyone here believes he saw the dog just before he fell.”

“Nonsense. It was just a cute stray,” he said uneasily. She shrugged and took the coffee pot over to her other customers.

His friend arrived the next morning and they both laughed about the story of the black dog. They set out on their climb. About halfway up the mountain, he looked up and saw the black dog.

“There’s the dog,” he called to his friend.

And then his foot slipped and he plunged down the side of the hill, desperately grabbing at saplings and rocks, trying to halt his descent. It seemed to take forever for him to stop sliding. There was a stabbing pain in his leg. When he looked at it, his head swimming, it was bent at an odd angle. They had to send in a mountain rescue team to get him down. At the hospital, they told him his leg was broken in two places and he was very lucky it wasn’t worse.

“You know, that was a very strange fall,” said his friend uneasily. “You don’t really think it had anything to do with that black dog?”

He looked down at the cast that extended all the way up to his hip.

“I don’t know. But I don’t really want to find out. Next time, let’s go to Colorado.”

His friend agreed.


You can read a longer version of this spooky Connecticut ghost story in Spooky New England by S.E. Schlosser.




thats not what happened he was walking down the street the next day when he saw the dog and got hit by a car.....just sayin.....


wow kind of scary but not so all who wonder black dogs can kill hhhhahahaaha

it was ok

i had a black dog

cute story we love puppies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

this story was ok

i have heard about this story


it was ok

i don't know but the story is said to be true

The legend of the spectral black dog is a very old one, mostly in the UK. It is often assiciated with death or something bad about to happen as superstitions say but studying actual accounts it seems more like a protective spirit. In this case it might have tried to warn the hiker not to climb that rock because he's going to fall. The first appearence is probably not "for joy" but a warning to stay away from that place. I am after this dog for years and I have read several encounters from the UK where the dog actually saved people's life by scaring them away from certain places.

This black dog is often associated with death and referred to as a hellhound, alone or in packs, sometimes even with entire hunting groups (my namesake is one of the supposed leaders of such spectral hunting group) and they are coming for the souls of the dead, or of sinners to bring them straight down to Hell.

Whatever the case, this dog is very likely in connection with death and the border between our world and the underworld, something like a keeper and if he takes the souls of the dead he also keeps the living away from death if their time hadn't come yet.
This dog appears in virtually every nation's mythology and always serves similar duties associated with death. Just think about the most famous one, Cerberus of the Greek.

By keeper I meant the keeper of the gate, a guard.

i like it

We read the Black Dog story in our classroom and two of our students (3rd grade) thought there should be more to the story and they wrote and ending. They had a great time using their imagination.

i wouldn`t blame a littel dog it`s not like it wants people to die

wait so is the black dog a demon or something...??


Another version is the Black Shuck Dogs of.. was it ireland? i dont remember...

That is just crazy!! I have a black dog! I am really freaking scared right now!!

that was cool

omg I was watching animal planet and the show about the haunted houses was on and it started tlking about how their was this black dog n if u seen it once u get good luckk, twice bad luck, and the third time u die!!! I can't belive this is a true story.

Thats an okay storay just so fake...he only saw the dog twice! right?im british.



This is crazy in a good way

It's kinda weird my friend told me the same story. and it wasn't from this creepy

i like this story because it is like the dog knew that he was coming for a secound time and i thought that was cool.

It was so true and it is awesome░░░♥

Kind of creepy.

The story was ok. I think there should have been more to it, but the ending was unexpected.

What ever happened to a Black Cat?

wow thats kind of scary but not enough to scare me better luck next time

But I have a black dog and I see him everyday and it's always joy!!

You should trust rumors and gossip no matter how dumb it may sound. Normally you would think an innocent black dog would not hurt anyone, that is where they got that wrong, I love dogs!!!

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Schlosser, author of the Spooky Series

About the Author: S.E. Schlosser

S.E. Schlosser is the author of the Spooky Series by Globe Pequot Press, as well as the Ghost Stories deck by Random House.  She has been telling stories since she was a child, when games of "let's pretend" quickly built themselves into full-length tales acted out with friends. A graduate of both Houghton College and the Institute of Children's Literature, Sandy received her MLS from Rutgers University while working as a full-time music teacher and a freelance author. Read more

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