An apparent pack of wild dogs has been running rampant in the suburban area known as Lemmon Valley, representatives of the Reno SPCA say.
There have been over two dozen reports in the last month of outdoor pets or domestic animals being attacked; so far, all the attacks have occurred in the late hours of the night, with an almost 100% fatality rate.
Authorities are advising residents to keep their pets indoors, and ensure that any livestock are in reinforced and locked enclosures. If you hear odd sounds, they advise against investigating it personally, instead recommending that you contact animal control.
Should you see an odd dog, remember basic safety procedures: Assume that all such animals are hostile, and may carry disease. Do not approach or interact with them unless their owners are present and give permission. Don’t leave food or pets unattended outside, and ensure that garbage containers are properly sealed and placed in proper positions. Do not leave doors or large windows open for extended periods unattended, as some reports indicate that pack members may be slipping inside unnoticed. Lastly, never offer food to animals you don’t know, as it encourages their return and, in the case of wild animals, lessens their natural fear of humans.
Descriptions of the pack vary, though almost universal is a depiction of whitish fur, elongated snouts and red or yellow eyes. Descriptions seem concurrent with coyotes or wild hybrid animals, though are generally larger, with an estimated weight of around seventy pounds.
One resident, however, doesn’t believe them to be wild dogs or coyotes.
“I know coyotes,” Edwin George says, “and I know mutts who’re too big for their britches, too.” As a lifetime resident of Lemmon Valley who spent twenty years working for animal control, his credentials would indicate he’s not prone to hysterics or exaggeration. “These ain’t like anything I’ve ever seen. Size of a wolf or a shepherd, but the snout’s way too long and thin. Teeth’re all wrong, too. Bent and skewed out of the jaw. If I was superstitious, I might be a little worried.”
When asked “Worried about what,” George smiles cryptically, fingering the golden crucifix at his neck. “Oh, you know. Things.”