Photos of alleged blood-sucking chupacabra found in Texas
mongabay.com
September 1, 2007
[update: probably a xolo dog]


Legendary blood-sucking beast found in Texas? Or is it just a dog gone wild?

Phylis Canion, a woman in Texas, believes she may have found the mythical blood-sucking chupacabra as roadkill near her ranch, reports the Associated Press.

The animal, described by Canion as "a cross between two or three different things", was discovered last month. The beast resembles a dog but is mostly hairless with big ears and large fanged teeth.

"It is one ugly creature," Canion told the Associated Press, "I've seen a lot of nasty stuff. I've never seen anything like this."

Canion believes the animal is the chupacabra, a cryptid beast known in rural folklore in Puerto Rico, Mexico, and the United States. Its name translates to "goat sucker" from its alleged penchant of drinking the blood of livestock like a vampire. The Chupacabra is sometimes blamed for the disappearance and loss of goats, chickens and other farm animals.



Frozen head of a so-called Chupacabra in Cuero, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Canion says she has lost up to 26 chickens in recent years, possibly as the result of the chupacabra.

After finding the roadkill, she put the beast's head in her freezer for later DNA testing.

At least one local veterinarian is skeptical that the beast in Canion's freezer is the so-called chupacabra.

"I'm not going to tell you that's not a chupacabra. I just think in my opinion a chupacabra is a dog," Travis Schaar of the Main Street Animal Hospital in nearby Victoria, who has seen Canion's find, was quoted as saying. He believes it may just be an unusual breed of dog that prefers to let its prey blood out before feeding.

Nevertheless the sighting has spurred brisk sales in chupacabra apparel in the small Texas town of Cuero.

"If everyone has a fun time with it, we'll keep doing it," she told the AP. "It's good for Cuero."

Not the first chupacabra frenzy




Phylis Canion examines the head and showing a photo of what she is calling a Chupacabra at her home in Cuero, Texas, Friday, Aug. 31, 2007. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Canion's find is not the first time the carcass of a strange animal has stirred up a chupacabra frenzy. According to Wikipedia, in July 2004, a rancher near San Antonio killed a hairless dog-like creature, which was attacking his livestock. This creature was later determined to be a malformed coyote. Similarly in 2006 an apparent feral dog was killed in Maine. At the time it was reputed to be a "killer mutant beast."

The legend of the chupacabra dates back to 1987 when Puerto Rican newspapers El Vocero and El Nuevo Dia reported on mysterious deaths of animals. Puerto Rican comedian Silverio Pérez is credited with coining the term "chupacabra."


Species Identified: Xoloitzcuintle breed of dog
more

Regarding the "chupacabra" story: I believe I can clarify the identity of this animal, and some research on the internet would do the same for anyone. It is a Xoloitzcuintle, Xolo for short, otherwise known as a Mexican Hairless dog. They are an unusual and rare breed, but a DOG nevertheless. I own a lovely one, and assure you he doesn't suck the blood of anything. Ludicrous.

What may be most disturbing is that three of these xolos were found as "roadkill", and xolos are very, very uncommon - and not feral in the US! This suggests to me that someone is breeding xolos and dumping "undesirable" dogs.

Finally, Phylis Canion may claim she knows exotic animals, but it appears what she really knows is marketing. [The press is] helping her make a bundle off a dead xolo that appears to have been malnourished and parasite-filled before it died.

For dog lovers like me, [the story is] truly vile.

Thanks for your time.

Best regards,

Claire



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CITATION:
September 1, 2007 (September 01, 2007).

Legendary blood-sucking chupacabra found in Texas?.

http://news.mongabay.com/2007/0901-chupacabra.html