WATCH: Dog abandoned in desert found living with coyote pack
LAS VEGAS, Nev. (KVVU/Gray News) - An all-white dog was spotted living among coyotes in the open Nevada desert for months.
Occasionally, the dog, named Ghost, would make his way into nearby neighborhoods with its unlikely friends.
According to KVVU, Ghost appeared to not only have been accepted by the pack but may even have led it.
The dog may have been dumped in the desert as a puppy and was taken in by the coyotes as one of their own.
Susan McMullen, of the Southern Nevada Trapping Team, said the first report of Ghost made on social media was in July.
“It seems like he may have been put out there between seven and eight months and somehow or another, the coyotes just accepted him,” she said.
For the last seven months, neighbors posted sightings of Ghost on neighborhood groups.
True to his name, every time someone would approach him, Ghost would disappear.
McMullen said she recently learned Ghost may have been injured, so she, along with her partner Timi Zondiros, determined to rescue him and get him help.
“He was actually just running with them and eating with them, but then he started to limp, and we were afraid that the coyotes could turn on him,” McMullen said.
Neighbors shared maps of the paths Ghost would take. McMullen and Zondiros searched near homes and in the open desert for days and hours on end.
“We were very nervous about where he was, how he was,” Zondiros said.
The efforts of the two finally paid off Saturday night. They set up a crate baited with food, and Ghost walked into the trap.
“When he got into that crate…. He just sat down. I think he was also relieved,” Zondiros said.
McMullen said it was a relief to get him out of that situation. She said, despite living for months in the desert with a pack of coyotes, Ghost is as friendly as can be and takes to every human he sees.
“He is the sweetest, most loving dog… he comes up to you, he wants to be petted, he wants to be held,” Zondiros said.
Living for seven months among coyotes did not come without a cost, however. KVVU reports fights scarred Ghost’s face and body, and he also has an ear infection, skin issues, and needs to have a broken toe amputated and to be neutered.
“He’s got some rocks in his belly because he was probably hungry and ate some rocks, so we are just going to watch those and hopefully those will pass so we don’t have to have yet another surgery,” McMullen said.
Ghost has shown no signs of aggression, and once his medical work is done, he will be up for adoption. The transition between living with coyotes to living with humans could take some time, however.
“He is not crate trained. He is not leash trained… he doesn’t sleep at night. He paces; he pants, nighttime is really hard for him,” McMullen said.
Ghost harbors no resentment toward humans despite being left for dead in the desert. He is ready to stop roaming and find a family who loves him and a forever home.
Zondiros said she wants Ghost to be adopted into a loving home where he’ll have a bed and people to give him affection.
“I believe he is going to be the best dog because they are the most grateful, the ones that are rescued… they feel it,” Zondiros said.
A GoFundMe has been established to help with Ghost’s medical bills, which currently cost over $4,000.
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