NBC10 Philadelphia - Claudia Rivero
A wolf-dog has been spotted several times near Pennypack Park in Northeast Philadelphia. Now, authorities with the Pennsylvania Game Commission are working to capture the animal so they can bring it to a wolf sanctuary. NBC10 s Claudia Rivero caught up with residents who have caught a glimpse of the wolf-dog.
Police are investigating several reported sightings of a wolf-dog hybrid in Pennypack Park. Police say they began to receive calls from local residents about a week ago of the animal being spotted near the 8200 block of Algon Avenue.
"They're a cross between a wolf and a dog," said Officer Jerry Czech of the Pa. Game Commission.
The Pennsylvania Game Commission set up cage traps in the area. They hope to capture the animal and take it to a wolf sanctuary. Residents say the animal has been living in the area since March.
"It's beautiful, we love it," said one woman.
"It looks kind of calm," said Bob Brummett. "But it still looks like a wolf to me. I don't want to have anything to do with it."
Officer Czech says wolf hybrids are illegal in Pennsylvania.
"Somebody probably had it as a pet and got tired of taking care of it and let it go," said Officer Czech.
In addition to four live traps, the Game Commission and local wolf sanctuary have been giving the animal hot dogs with sedatives. The animal has managed to avoid capture however. Officials are urging residents to stay away from the animal.
"It's staying here because of that reason," said Officer Czech. "It keeps coming out because people put out food. It comes out, eats the food and then it goes back into the woods."
Officials say they have also received reports of a family of wolf-dogs living in the area though they have not confirmed this.
After the animal is captured, officials say they will perform DNA tests to determine what it exactly is. They also say if the animal was indeed someone's pet, the owner could face charges.