Boy loses arm after being mauled by family’s wolf hybrids

Posted at 7:25 PM, Apr 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-04 19:25:57-04

OLYMPIA, Wash. – A 3-year-old Washington boy was attacked Monday when he put his hand into a kennel containing two hybrid wolves, the Thurston County Sheriff's Office said.

His injuries resulted in one of his arms being amputated, according to KCPQ.

"The child had sustained serious injury to one of his hands and forearm. The child was a resident at this home where two wolf hybrids were maintained by the family within fenced kennel," according to the sheriff's office.

The boy was flown to Seattle's Harborview Medical Center for treatment. A nursing supervisor said Monday night that the boy was in stable condition after undergoing a "traumatic arm amputation."

The sheriff's office said the preliminary investigation showed that the mother was inside the house when, unknown to her, the child wandered outside and "stuck his hand into the kennel and was attacked by at least one of the wolf hybrids."

Thurston County Animal Control and Washington State Fish and Wildlife were called in to "secure the animals per their protocol for further investigation," the sheriff's office said.

"We have had a history with this family and their animals," said Diane Gallegos, executive director of Wolf Haven International. "Quite honestly, we have worked for the last several years to stop this family from breeding these animals and have not been successful."

Three years ago, Gallegos said, another canine was removed from the property after DNA test showed that it was pure wolf.  It is legal for people to own wolf hybrids in Thurston County.

The mother, the owner of the wolf hybrids, was cooperating with investigators, the sheriff's office said.