Dingo mistaken for a dog
© wandi_dingo - Instagram

Puppy escapes eagles clutches, but DNA results reveal that everyone got it wrong

By Zoë Monk Content Writer

Published on the

When a resident in a rural town in the Australian state of Victoria takes a little stray pup to the vets, no one could have predicted what a DNA test would discover.

A resident in Wandiligong got the shock of her life when she followed the sound of crying out into her garden, where she spotted what looked like a puppy in the claws of an eagle. The bird then dropped the animal and flew off.

DNA testing

On closer inspection, the woman began to doubt that the little animal was actually a dog and thought that perhaps it was a fox instead. Either way, she was concerned that it might be injured after its ordeal, so she took it to the vet to get checked out. 

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The vet was also sceptical about what the animal was, so they decided to organise a DNA test. To everyone's amazement, it turned out that the animal wasn’t a dog at all.

He's a dingo.

But the surprise didn’t just end there. It was discovered that the animal was actually a rare Australian alpine dingo, which is an endangered species. Australian alpine dingoes are vulnerable to extinction because of hunting, inbreeding and government education programmes. Out of the three types of Australian dingoes, alpine dingoes are the only ones threatened with extinction.

Wonderful Wandi

The dingo pup has been named Wandi and now lives at the Australian Dingo Foundation’s sanctuary, where he gets along with all the staff.

While most dingoes are actually a dog-dingo hybrid, Wandi is a 100% purebred alpine dingo. This could mean that he will one day become a key part of the sanctuary’s crucial breeding programme, which currently includes 40 adult dingoes.

While Wandi may have caused much excitement among conservationists, he's also become a little Instagram star with his very own account packed with adorable photos and videos of him playing and hanging out with other dingos.

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