Monday, September 25, 2006

Trappers hired to capture escaped wolf hybrids in N.H.

LEMPSTER, N.H. — One of the seven wolf-hybrids that escaped from a pen this week returned on its own, and the police chief figured the others would follow as they got hungry.

"They are lazy like us," police Chief Shady Blackwell said Friday. "We are going to go to grocery store for food, not hunt it down. They know where the grocery store is, and it's inside the pens."

The seven escaped from Dancing Brooke Lodge sanctuary and have been spotted in neighbors' yards. Concerned for their pets and kids, neighbors have guns ready and professional trappers were trying to capture the hybrids. The Fish and Game Department is not involved because the dogs are considered domestic animals. But neighbors said they were concerned about safety.

Neighbor Carol LaBounty said worry over her pets and children who live nearby prompted her to prepare her shotgun. She said many of her neighbors were doing the same. Blackwell said there was some initial panic as residents learned the hybrids were on the loose, but as he spread the word that the animals basically are shy and stay away from people, residents calmed down.

The sanctuary's 44 dogs are 50 percent to 90 percent wolf. All have been spayed or neutered. The animals are strictly regulated in most states and Dancing Brooke often takes in out-of-state animals to keep them from being euthanized.

Dancing Brooke president Bill Russell, a Massachussetts state trooper, says his organization is the only one set up to take in wolf hybrids. Russell and his wife, Anna, were cited in Maine in 2004 when dogs they were keeping there escaped.

Bill Russell said after two dogs escaped Tuesday through a hole in the fence, he opened the fence so the dogs could re-enter their pen. When the animals didn't return Wednesday, he closed the fence and filled the hole with a log. He believes the other five dogs moved the log and dug out around the fence and escaped sometime Wednesday night or Thursday morning. He said the escaped dogs are a father and six offspring.

Blackwell said Russell didn't immediately inform neighbors or authorities. "I'm disappointed in their initial response," Blackwell said. Russell said he didn't call local police because the dogs were close by and he believed that as a trooper, he could do a better job of searching.

The lack of communication has upset some neighbors, said LaBounty. She said she supported the sanctuary until she learned of the escaped dogs. "He's not keeping us informed as to what's going on," she said. "Now, we want them gone, we want them off this street."

Neighbors have been complaining about noise from the sanctuary since people began bringing dogs there two years ago. This month, a judge said the 44 dogs would have to be euthanized unless new pens were built for them farther away from neighbors.

  • Maine Today

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Please find it in your heart to forgive Russell for not informing but he was thinking with HIS HEART... Please appreciate the true wild howls.. please give him time! Please DO NOT LET THEM BE DESTROYED !!!!!!!!

    10/27/2006 12:19 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Would you destroy your own children? NO YOU WOULD TRY TO HELP THEM OR AWAIT THE TIME TO GET THEM HELP BUT YOU WOULDNT LET THEM BE KILLED UNLESS THEY WERE MURDERERS THEMSELVES.. These hybrids deserve a chance!!!!! Please give them another chance!!!!!I'll be praying for God to open your hearts!!!!

    10/27/2006 12:23 PM  
    Anonymous P.Marilyn Powell said...

    These animals do not deserve a death sentence.They have committed no crime by just being alive and howling.
    My heart goes out to Mr Russell. I am sick at the thought of such an outrage against innocent animals.
    There really is no such thing as a wolf hybrid. a hybrid is a combination of two different species. Dogs and wolves are of the same species. Even the governments own publications say they are dogs. The name WOLF, seems to elicit the same reaction that the name Indian once did; and many believe the only good one is a dead one. I say, they are magnificant animals who mate for life, care for their young better than a lot of humans care for theirs, they greive the loss of a mate or pack member.
    SIGNED,P. Marilyn Powell
    Wolfeboro, NH

    10/30/2006 12:33 PM  
    Anonymous P. M. Powell said...

    Please send letters in support of Mr Russell and the wolf dogs to:

    Justice Edward B Tenney
    Newport District Court
    55 Main st,
    Newport,NH 03773

    The Board Of Selectmen
    PO Box 33
    East Lempster, NH 03605

    Thank you. P.M. Powell

    10/30/2006 12:49 PM  
    Anonymous Carol Gingue said...

    I strongly agree with Marilyn Powell!! I have an Alaskan Malamute and they are vey kind hearted and from those pics the mixed breeds are part Alaskan Malamute.. pls pls pls GIVE THESE ANIMALS A CHANCE!! LET THEM LIVE!!
    THEY ARE INNOCENT!! I could only wish that I was a neighbor - Id be right there wanting to help take care of them!! If I get to move to NH I'll be looking to live close to those beautiful animals!

    Carol Gingue and prev. anonymous

    11/02/2006 2:14 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I came from California, and I do rescue, I worked closely with a wolf sactuary in Paso Robles. Wolf dogs are wonderful caring animals, I have rescued many, and these animals thrive in the right home. The more percentage of wolf they have the shyer they will be, I am outraged at the ignorance of your neighbors, maybe you should hand out some leaflets explaining the wolf dog. Maybe then, they might have more inderstanding, Or maybe you should envite your neighbors to come and meet the dogs.

    Please people learn about them, don't hate what you don't know. Please, they don't deserve to die.

    12/25/2006 11:00 PM  
    Anonymous Maira R. said...

    I believe that they should build the pens a bit apart from the neighbors but just because Mr. Russel made a mistake in not alerting the police about the wolves hybrids having escaped doesn't mean that they should be put down without a second chance no harm was done to any one or anything. please respect these magnificent animals and their wild howls because whats the difference in a wolf's howl and a dog's bark? Most of us have a beloved pet whom we simply adore and couldn't live without but I'm sure some neighbors would disagree. If your dog was to escape temporarily and some one wanted to put him down just so he wouldn't do it again because they didn't want to chance it with him biting someone I'm sure you would protest and claim that he meant no harm. The same with these beautiful animals they don't mean any harm to anyone. I hope for every one who reads this understands that nothing should be put down just because of what it may be. These animals are simply TOO MAGNIFICENT!!!

    6/14/2007 2:00 PM  
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