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, 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, the state is leading the nation in copperhead snake bites.

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 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.

  1. Lee Leslie

    Thank you, Ron. Next time in Alabama, I’ll keep a close watch on our virgin beagle. BTW, I’d vote for pooytes.

  2. That’s not a coydog. Its body structure and markings show no sign of wild heritage.
    Best guess would be husky and shepherd mixed.

    Coydogs do happen, but they are quite rare. Most reported coyote crosses are “just” husky mix dogs.

  3. not a coydog its a chow mix with a sheperd

  4. That’s NOT a Coydog, but a CAROLINA Dog, a Native American landrace, now recognized as a breed. Many Carolina Dogs are unfortunately mistaken for “coydogs” or must mutts, and killed, and they are becoming more and more scarce as a result of misidentification. I’ve owned and bred Carolina Dogs for several decades, and I’ve seen many individuals identical to the dog in the trap.

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