VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Virginia Beach City officials are urging residents to refrain from feeding a stray dog who’s been eluding animal control for months.
In a hefty release sent by Virginia Beach officials, it detailed the exhaustive efforts of animal control officers to catch a very elusive dog near Lynnhaven Parkway and Sabre Street.
The dog, described to be a white and tan, female hound mix, had reportedly been on the loose for over 6 months within days of being adopted by a Virginia Beach resident in December of last year.
“After countless failed attempts to catch her with treats, toys, and kindness, Animal Control Officers decided to attempt using a humane dog trap,” officials said.
The plan was to lure the dog into the trap suing bait and hopefully catch it and bring it to animal control where it can be evaluated by the shelter veterinarian.
The problem? Well, it seemed the dog had been lured by another source handing out food.
The residents themselves.
City officials reported citizens dropping off food for the dog which caused the dog to not seek the food in the trap.
Officials stated that although they understood the good intentions of the residents, it prevented animal control officers from catching the dog and helping her.
“With everyone giving her a feast on Lynnhaven Parkway, she has no reason to go to the trap,” said Gina Highfield with Lost and Found Pets Hampton Roads.
Highfield says the traps in the woods are monitored and just last night multiple people were seen going near the trap.
“While everyone thinks they’re helping it’s actually jeopardizing her safety,” she said.
According to reports, officials believe the trap did catch the dog at one point, however, it was let out of the trap by a citizen which made the dog wary of entering the trap again.
Over the passing months of eluding animal control, officials said the dog had become reliant on food from passersby while sitting on the edge of Lynnhaven Road near Sabre Street.
The high traffic area had become a concern for officials regarding the safety of motorists and the dog.
“Animal Control has tried for months to catch this dog, however due to actions out of our control this have been unsuccessful.”
This resulted in officials handing out a more “forceful” approach to the problem.
A NO TRESPASSING sign had recently been posted near the area by the property owner in hopes to aide animal control officers in safely catching the elusive pup.
Officials said that police and animal control officers will also be patrolling the area regularly while enforcing the rule and violators caught leaving food will be held accountable in regards to littering on the property.
They said their hopes is to catch the dog safely, bring her to safety to be checked out by proper officials, and hopefully have her placed for adoption.