‘Adorable’ stray dog turns out to be rare purebred dingo

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There’s a lot riding on this little guy.

A pup found stranded in the backyard of a rural Australian home was confirmed to be a rare, purebred dingo.

The young canine named Wandi, which experts believe freed himself from a hungry bird of prey, now fights for the survival of his entire species at the Australian Dingo Foundation.

“They’re our apex predator — they’re our lion,” Lyn Watson, the foundation’s director, told CNN. “Their job is to keep the kangaroo population down. That was their job before the coming of the Europeans, that was their job for thousands of years.”

Australia’s native dingo population has been driven down by habitat destruction and hunting, and it’s now considered a “vulnerable” species by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources.

Wandi was discovered this past August in Wandiligong, a small town in the state of Victoria, by local Jane Guiney. Veterinarian Rebekah Day, who assisted with the rescue, said the homeowners could hear “whimpering” nearby. They initially left the dog alone, assuming he was lost, but decided to call authorities when they realized Wandi was helpless.

“He was very laid-back and happy to be picked up. Really just ever so cute, he was just a little floof,” gushed Day, who examined Wandi at her clinic, Alpine Animal Doctors hospital in nearby Bright, Victoria. She said scratches on his back indicate he was being carried by a pair of talons.

“There was no evidence of any other dingoes around [and] we have some large birds of prey in the area, and we have seen lambs and small dogs picked up on occasion,” Day said.

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Dingo Discovery Sanctuary

When Watson learned of Day’s special patient, she asked the vet to send a genetic sample for testing at a lab at the University of New South Wales.

Wandi, they discovered, was a 100-percent match for pure dingo.

Watson has since brought Wandi to socialize with the other individuals in the breeding program, which includes about 40 adult dingoes. In the meantime, the woman who found the miracle pup has created a GoFundMe to help support Wandi’s journey.

“We’re just keeping the genetic lines going until the day that there’s going to be a safe place where they can be rewilded,” said Watson.

GoFundme

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