Clanton, Alabama, residents spooked by odd-dog sightings, have discovered that at least one of them was a “coydog” — half coyote, half dog.  Animal Control Officer Bobby Tucker, who trapped the creature, believes it was the offspring of a coyote and a German Shepherd, according to the Clanton Advertiser, and he thinks there are other “coydogs” out there.

“There are a lot of elderly people in the area concerned with seeing them,” Tucker told the Advertiser. “We don’t know a lot about them or what they’re capable of.”  This particular “coydog” was euthanized after Humane Society officials decided it was too aggressive toward humans to be socialized.

According to dogbreedinfo.com, a “coydog” is the result of a male coyote mating with a female domestic dog.  The offspring of a female coyote and a male domestic dog is called a “dogote” — in case you’re ever asked.  According to Wikipedia, coyotes have also been cross-bred with wolves, jackals and Australian dingoes, and, in Germany, with poodles.  The entry does not explain why anyone would want to breed a coyote with a poodle or say whether they’re called coypoos.

North Carolina appears to be having a worse wild animal problem than coydogs.  According to NewsObserver.com, the state is leading the nation in copperhead snake bites.

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Ron Taylor

Ron Taylor

Ron Taylor was born and raised in Georgia and worked more than 40 years at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution as a reporter and editor and as an online producer for ajc.com and AccessAtlanta. He served for a time as the newspaper's regional editor, overseeing coverage of the South. He is co-author, with Dr. Leonard Ray Teel, of Into the Newsroom:  An Introduction to Journalism and has conducted workshops in the Middle East on feature writing.