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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 February 2006, 13:12 GMT
Appeal to find 'beast' new home
Dante the white Alsatian
Dante was found to be a white Alsatian when caught
A white Alsatian dog, mistaken for a wolf or hyena when spotted roaming the countryside near Port Talbot, has been put up for adoption by a dogs' home.

Police were called after several sightings by a golf course in the Margam area in December last year.

But the "beast" proved to be an escaped dog with a limp which made him appear to walk with the gait of an hyena.

Staff at the Dogs Trust in Bridgend have named the dog Dante and have launched an appeal to find him a home.

Police were called to the Lakeside Golf Range, in Margam, on 15 December after a white creature was sighted by a number of players.

The animal was described as being like a wolf or hyena and was photographed by officers.

It was the latest in several sightings of the "beast" by members of the public, who reported it as looking increasingly distressed and malnourished.

The animal was eventually caught and found to be a German Shepherd, said to be about six or seven years old, with an injured paw.

'Sweet dog'

Staff at the Dog's Trust's Bridgend rehoming centre said Dante had no identification and was initially nervous of human contact, but they believe he once lived in a domestic environment as he understands commands like "sit" and "paw".

Fox in Cardiff
A 'wallaby' in Cardiff turned out to be an ill fox

Beverley Price, manager of the rehoming centre, said: "Dante is a beautiful and sweet dog, with lots of character.

"He has been through a lot, so I am very keen to find him a home as soon as possible.

"He is not surprisingly a little apprehensive when he first meets people, but after five minutes is your best friend, he will make a fantastic pet for someone.

"It is difficult to say why anyone would dump such a beautiful animal."

The Margam "beast" was the latest in a series of apparent sightings of mystery animals across Wales in recent years.

A month previously, a "big cat" was spotted in nearby Baglan - the latest sighting of feline creatures in areas ranging from Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire to the Brecon Beacons and Monmouthshire.

In 2004, numerous sightings of a wallaby-like creature were reported in residential areas across north Cardiff.

The animal later proved to be a fox suffering from mange, malnutrition, and an injured leg, which had to be destroyed.

Cardiff's 'wallaby' destroyed
19 Oct 04 |  Wales

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