Ind judge orders city to return wolf-dog to owner

PLYMOUTH, Ind. (AP) - An Indiana judge has ordered Plymouth city officials to return a hybrid wolf-dog to its homeless owner despite their claims that the animal is vicious.

Marshall County Superior Court Judge Robert Bowen said Friday that he could not conclude that Todd Wagoner's pet, Shyrkee, is vicious as defined by a city ordinance.

City official had asked the judge for permission to euthanize the dog after police and animal control officers testified it was a threat to the public.

They said the dog, which was tied to a tree, had to be tranquilized before it could be taken to a shelter after Wagoner was arrested for public intoxication on June 7.

But Bowen said the dog had only become aggressive when it was confronted or provoked. He did, however, order Wagoner to keep the dog enclosed or leashed.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)