A woman was left shocked after discovering the ‘homeless dog’ she rescued after a hit and run was actually a wild coyote.
Andrea Athie was driving in Cuidad Victoria, Mexico, when the car in front of her hit an animal and drove off without stopping to check on it.
Wanting to help, Andrea stopped her car, got out and tried to calm the animal, which she thought was a stray dog based on its appearance.
Unable to lift it into her because on her own, Andrea called her friends to ask for help. Thankfully, two came to her aid and she managed to get the injured animal to a nearby vet.
Sign up to our TeamDogs newsletter for your weekly dose of dog news, pictures and stories.
It was after she arrived at the vets when Andrea discovered she had actually been cuddling up with a wild coyote – and not a malnourished dog.
Sharing a picture of the animal on Twitter, her sister wrote: “My sister picked up a coyote thinking it was a run over dog and took him to the vet.”
While coyotes have been known to attack humans and their pets, it is uncommon for them to attack when unprovoked and they rarely cause serious injuries.
Andrea, who named the coyote Pancho, said: “Seeing the situation, I stopped and went to help him, without knowing that he was a coyote.
“He was never aggressive. He let himself be caressed but we all know that he is a wild animal and he couldn’t live with us.”
After undergoing X-rays, he was discovered Pancho sustained two injuries to his cervicals during the crash, leaving him unable to move his hind legs or empty his bowels.
“Every procedure that was performed on Pancho was through a veterinarian and professionally done,” said Andrea.
“Unfortunately, Pancho could no longer continue fighting with us. Pancho simply did not respond to treatment.
“Everything was done humanly possible. In that last moment, I looked at him and wanted him to have the best possible quality of life and not suffer.”
Despite having to say goodbye to Pancho, Andrea says he left her with a “something very important”, which she will take with her throughout life.
She said: “Pancho came here to show us how to help those who need it, with small acts we can change many things and Pancho showed us that.
“Right now this is what we need as people – to help each other, to do the well without looking at who.
“Many will think otherwise but I know there are still thousands of people who are willing to help, who are not indifferent to the pain or suffering of another living being.
“As I said before, animals cannot speak or ask for anything, they give love and do not ask for anything in return and this is proof of it.
“I know it was a wild animal but I also know that he knew we were there to help him. Pancho’s body will be cremated and we will keep it in a biodegradable urn that will be planted.”
Do you have a dog story to share? Email email@example.com.