We rescued an adorable lost puppy off the street – but then realised it was something MUCH more dangerous
A FAMILY who thought they had rescued an adorable lost puppy off the street were left stunned when they discovered its real identity.
The animal lovers initially believed they had heroically saved a cute pup that they found “wandering and distressed” on a busy road.
But the brood from Massachusetts, US, had picked up a baby coyote in Cape Cod and unknowingly brought it into their home on April 23.
After realising they had made a dangerous mistake, they hastily called the New England Wildlife Center (NEWC) for help.
Spokeswoman Nina Flaherty-Bellotti told The Boston Globe that the unnamed family had the animal for “less than 24 hours”.
The non-profit wildlife hospital detailed the major mix-up in a Facebook post, explaining that the coyote had been separated from his pack.
It explained that its experts were initially concerned that the family may have been exposed to rabies.
Coyotes roaming the US are commonly infected with the deadly infection, which can be fatal for all mammals – including humans.
But alongside the Mass Department of Public Health, the NEWC determined “there was no potential exposure risk to rabies”.
It meant that the wildlife experts could clear the coyote cub for care and he is now “recovering comfortably” in an isolation ward.
But the wild animal won’t be alone for long, as he is set to soon be introduced to his foster sibling who has arrived from another clinic.
The post continued: “Once both pups receive their vaccinations they will be raised together and will be given a chance to grow and learn natural behaviours in our large outdoor caging.
“We work hard to give them as much of a natural upbringing as possible, and will work to replicate the essential behaviors and skills they learn from mom and dad.
“This case had a happy ending, but it could have easily gone differently.”
The centre explained it would “have been mandated to euthanize the pup and test for rabies” if the family had been bitten, scratched or had extended contact with the coyote.
State wildlife officials said that eastern coyotes usually give birth to four to eight puppies in the months of April or May.
The New England Wildlife Center plans to release the two coyotes in the upcoming months, Flaherty-Bellotti said.
The non-profit promised to post updates on the coyotes’ progress and photos of their introduction on its Facebook page.
The family aren’t the only people that have been duped into taking in a wolf dog.
We previously told how an animal lover mistakenly picked up a baby coyote that they believed was an abandoned puppy.
Another woman had the shock of her life when she took in a “stray” husky-like puppy and it grew into something more deadly.
And this woman believed she had bought an expensive pug, but was left stunned when it grew up to be a completely different breed.
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