Dog found in Ft. Worth turns out to be baby coyote

A Fort Worth woman recently found that what she thought was a dog turned out to be a coyote.

Cheyenne Harboe says she just wanted to do a good thing for a dog in need. But when it comes to wild animals in large cities, cute can quickly turn to dangerous.

"I thought it was a puppy at first," said Harboe. "Then I got closer, and he was really skinny, and I thought he was probably sick."

Harboe says when she saw the baby animal on her way into work, right behind a Posados Café in north Fort Worth, she wanted to help.

"When i got up to it, like I could tell, ‘I don't think this is a dog, or if it is, it's a really, really skinny dog,'" said Harboe.

With the animal wrapped in a blanket, Harboe named him Taco and took him to Summerfields Animal Hospital.

There, it was confirmed that Taco was, in fact, a coyote.

"The fact that he just even let me come close to him, I knew that something was probably wrong with him," said Harboe.

Again, her suspicions were confirmed.

Dr. Karen Metzler, who works at Summerfields, saw several signs of rabies in the little coyote pup.

"The lack of fear in this puppy sets off alarm bells for the potential for rabies," said Metzler.

That revelation means the coyote is a danger to anyone it's exposed to.

"The potential for rabies exposure is present in wildlife, and coyotes are known to be a high reservoir host for rabies," said Metzler.

Animal control was called, and the little guy was taken away. It's not exactly the ending that Harboe had envisioned.

"I kind of regretted like trying to help him out ‘cause of the whole animal control thing," she said.

State law says coyotes are a high risk animal for rabies.

The only way to test for rabies is to sample the brain tissue, so the coyote was euthanized and will be tested.

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