Bark-up-the-wrong-tree meaning

(idiomatic) To do, believe, or pursue something wrong or inappropriate; to take the wrong approach; to follow a false lead; to blame or rebuke the wrong person.
verb
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Origin of bark-up-the-wrong-tree

  • An allusion to a situation in which a hunting dog mistakenly identifies the tree up which it has chased an animal and positions itself at the base of another tree, barking upward at the branches.

    From Wiktionary