Signs are still up near an industrial area on Springhill Road in Parksville, warning people to beware of not just a dog, but a wolf-dog.
Over the last several weeks, people say they’ve encountered and even been chased by the animal.
“The bottom line is it has to be taken out of that area,” Vaughan Roberts told CHEK News on Oct. 20.
And that’s exactly what a group called Find Lost and Escaped Dogs (FLED) is now trying to do.
It has set up a trap in the area with a trail camera, which has caught images of the estimated 150-pound wolf-dog nearby.
“It is pretty unusual for us to try to trap this breed,” said FLED Co-Founder Gary Shade. “Normally, we do dogs, and we’re just taking the lead from a lady who asked for our help. She needed a trap because her first trap got smashed by a little bear, so we came up with our trap and trail camera.”
They hope to catch it and move it to a sanctuary in Alberta where other wolf-dogs are kept.
But catching it is proving to be difficult.
“Well, normally, I can get a dog within 24 hours,” Shade said. “Domestic dogs are a little different, just throw a cheeseburger in there and in he goes. This guy is a little more smart, he checks the trap all around and he’s not hungry enough to go in.”
And the reason for that? Someone appears to be feeding the wolf-dog.
“People have threatened to shoot it. Some guy is up there feeding it, which we don’t want anyone to feed this dog because we want to get him hungry enough to go to the trap. And this one fellow has been feeding, and he’s saying that he wants to get the dog,” added Shade.
Even though it has reportedly attacked two dogs, he doesn’t think the wolf-dog is a threat to people or dogs if they are leashed.
“Well, every dog that people say was attacked was off leash, and it ran up to it. Well, you get that in dog parks here,” he said.
“A little dog runs up to a big dog, and it bites it, well the big dog attacks it.”
It’s believed the wolf-dog was abandoned by someone in a white van around early October, who pushed it out and drove off.
If you see the animal, you’re encouraged to report it to FLED with a location as soon as possible. Information can be texted to 250-213-1420.