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FWC, trappers take in alligator after a Cape Coral family’s dog was eaten

Out of Crystal Lake and into the hands of Florida Fish and Wildlife.

“It felt like a gator. He was heavy, he was heavy; must have weighed about 400 pounds,” said neighbor Al Painchaud.

“He measured out at 9’10”, so a big gator,” said trapper Tracy Hansen.

Trappers were searching all over for the alligator after FWC said it took a family’s dog on Tuesday.

“We finally found him laying in this one corner,” Hansen said.

Neighbors even jumped in to help reel the gator in after hearing about the family’s heartbreak.

“Oh, I just feel bad because we see the dogs all the time, we go out on the boat there in the canal and they chase the boat, so it’s unfortunate,” Painchaud said.

Neighbors told us they’re thankful it wasn’t a person taken from the Cape Coral park.

“How are they going to keep the gators out? It could be a child rather than a dog,” Painchaud said.

But to lose a family dog like this is an unexpected tragedy. Trappers are thankful they can give that family some sense of closure.

“It’s part of our job to give some consolance to the family,” Hansen said.

FWC couldn’t tell us if the dog drowned or if it was on a leash. They didn’t have specific plans for the alligator yet, but that was the only alligator found in this lake, so they’re pretty sure it was the right one.

Reporter:Anika Henanger
Writer:Briana Harvath
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