It’s nearing the most wonderful time of the year … but not for “Family Guy” fans. On Sunday, Nov. 24, viewers bid adieu to original character Brian Griffin. And needless to say they’re not happy about it.

For those not familiar with the Quahog gossip, Brian, the Griffin’s (martini loving) family dog was involved in a fatal hit-and-run outside 31 Spooner St. Due to the severity of his injuries, the veterinarian was unable to save him and Brian passed away in episode 6, “Life of Brian.”

Appearing on “Family Guy” since its pilot episode in 1999, Brian was a staple on the show – pining over Lois, putting up with Peter’s antics and tagging along with Stewie on his time traveling journeys. His death has made fans livid, even spurring some individuals to create a petition on Change.org to “Bring Brian Griffin back to Family Guy.”

But is the craze over Brian’s death necessary? Or was “Life of Brian” part of “Family Guy’s” plan to gain attention? A new website that has popped up has fans wondering if Brian is somehow returning to the show … or perhaps getting his own spinoff.

The website in question is www.BriansAnnouncement.com, and the page features a countdown for “A special announcement from Brian.” As of 2 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Nov. 26. the countdown had nine days and 22 hours left.

While the site says that it’s a “Fox Production,” Entertainment Weekly reporter James Hibberd tweeted that the Brian announcement countdown site is unfortunately a hoax.

“Confirmed by producers: That Family Guy Brian announcement countdown site is a fan hoax,” Hibberd posted on Tuesday afternoon.

As the International Business Times previously reported, there were four reasons why “Family Guy” decided to kill off the family dog – one of them being that they just wanted to “shake things up.” However it’s important to note that Brian is in the title of two upcoming “Family Guy” episodes this season – “Brian’s a Bad Father” and “Brian the Closer.”

It’s possible that the show could have scrapped future episodes to rework a new angle … OR “Family Guy” fans could be getting a Christmas miracle. The synopsis for the Dec. 15 episode, “Christmas Guy,” teases the following:

"When Carter Pewterschmidt cancels the annual Quahog Christmas carnival, because he hates the holiday, Peter must transform his father-in-law from a Scrooge into a hometown hero in order to salvage the event. Meanwhile, Stewie devises a master plan to get the one and only thing he wants for Christmas.”

Stewie confessed to his new dog, Vinny, that Brian was his best friend. One theory for “Christmas Guy” is that Stewie’s “master plan” is to get Brian back. Perhaps he gets the materials he needs to rebuild his time machine? Or maybe Jesus swings by and delivers a Christmas surprise for the Griffin family?

Do you think Brian is going to return from the grave? Let us know your thoughts on his death in the comments section.

For more TV scoop and spoilers follow Amanda Remling on Twitter - @AmandaTVScoop.