5 dogs attacked by lynx in Inuvik since late November, says official

Lynx have attacked five dogs in Inuvik since late November, a trend a local wildlife officer calls surprising.

'I have never seen a lynx do this,' says renewable resources officer

A local wildlife official says the lynx attacks in Inuvik are surprising. (David Zalubowski/Associated Press)

Lynx have attacked five dogs in Inuvik since late November, a trend the local wildlife official says is surprising.

"I've been in Inuvik for 10 years and I've been a wildlife officer for 17, and I have never seen a lynx do this," said Toby Halle, a renewable resources officer in Inuvik.

Halle said a local trapped a lynx on Tuesday. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources received a call about another lynx altercation with a dog on Wednesday morning.

The attacks have happened in various areas of town.

Halle said the most recent incident happened near the hospital. The previous attack took place on the opposite end of town.

Lynx are 'typically reclusive animals,' according to Toby Halle, a renewable resources officer in Inuvik. (Submitted by Toby Halle)

Halle said this behaviour is unusual since lynx are "typically reclusive animals" and don't usually come into inhabited areas.

Out of the five reports that the department has received, four dogs were off-leash at the time of the attack and one was approached while tied up.

Halle said he doesn't know the conditions of all of the dogs but none have died as far as he is aware. 

In an effort to quell the situation, the department is hoping traps already set for the large number of foxes around town will also attract the problem lynx.

Halle said the department focuses on using non-lethal traps, but if licensed trappers want to set up around the community, they should be cautious so dogs don't accidentally getting caught in them.

"We recommend ... they do mark their traps and to let people know that they are trapping there," he said. 

Any lynx caught will be tested for rabies and other animal diseases.

Halle said if a pet comes in contact with a wild animal, owners should take precautions.

"You want to make sure you monitor the health of that animal for at least 10 days, and maybe longer. And take it to a vet because it may have an injury that you may not notice."

A local trapper caught this lynx in his trap on Tuesday. (Submitted by JoJo Arey)


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