‘Wolf-dog’ threat ends; animal ‘dispatched’
Since last week, a search has been continuing for a dangerous animal which had escaped custody of Lee County Animal Services in eastern Lehigh Acres, near the border between Lee and Hendry county. The owners of the animal had surrendered custody to Animal Services. In turn, the animal was to be euthanized.
In the ensuing days, what has been commonly referred to as the “wolf-dog” had been seen by numerous citizens, media, Animal Service officers and deputies. Due to serious concerns for public safety, extensive efforts were employed to remove the threat from the residential area. Those efforts culminated this morning after another citizen sighting.
At 9:06 a.m. today, the animal was reported near Jefferson Avenue and East 8th Street. Deputies and Animal Service officers responded to the area. The East District Tour Commander, Lt. Richard Dobson, observed the “wolf-dog” four blocks away on Jackson Street. The “wolf-dog” was behind a vacant residence in the 800 block of Jackson Street providing the safest opportunity to dispatch the animal and bring an end to the public safety threat.
During his career, Dobson was assigned as a K-9 Deputy and said, “It was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do.”
The animal was dead at the scene. An Animal Services officer arrived to retrieve and transport the animal to its facility in Fort Myers.