British Columbia

Grieving couple warns about wolf attacks after dog apparently snatched from Kitimat property

A grieving Kitimat couple is warning parents and pet owners to stay vigilant, after their four-year-old Shih Tzu Bichon cross was apparently nabbed by a wolf early Friday morning.

2 neighborhood dogs also go missing

Brenda Dauphinee says Stella was the light of their lives. She is telling other pet owners, and parents of little ones, to be vigilant against other wolf attacks. (Submitted)

A grieving Kitimat couple is warning pet owners and parents of little ones to stay vigilant, after their Shih Tzu, Bichon cross was apparently snatched by a wolf early Friday morning.

Brenda Dauphinee said her husband Billie had just let four-year-old Stella out for a pee around 3:00 a.m. PT. He heard something outside, and when Stella didn't return, he immediately got dressed and headed out to find her.

As Billie followed along the side of their carport, he looked out to see what he thought was a big dog.  As he approached, he realized it was a wolf — and in that moment the animal took off  — and Stella was gone.

"The house is dead quiet, nothing is the same." said Dauphinee. "She was the light of our lives."

Since Stella's disappearance, Dauphinee has heard from neighbours that two other dogs have gone missing from the area.

Wolves have free run of the town says Brenda Dauphinee, whose dog was snatched by a wolf in Kitimat. (Submitted)

The British Columbia Conservation Officer Service says wolves are commonly seen in the Kitimat area but can't confirm whether Stella was killed by a wolf or some other wild animal.

"There are instances where a wolf can be ejected from the pack and when that does happen they have to find other means to survive," said Conservation Officer Scott Senkiw.

"As a lone wolf, they will be an opportunistic wild animal ... and there have been instances where they will take small pets." 

Dauphinee says she's noticed wolf habits have changed recently — they can be seen night and day now — where in the past she would only see them at dusk. She's cautioning people in the Kitimat area to be vigilant.

"Keep an eye on your dog and keep an eye on the kids. Because if they're that bold, they don't care."

With files from Megan Batchelor and Audrey McKinnon

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.