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Wolves kill herding dog in Eastern Oregon

Unburied cow carcasses thought to have attracted them to location
ODFW file photo

BAKER CITY — Wolves attracted to six unburied cow carcasses at an eastern Oregon ranch killed a herding dog, wildlife officials said.

Brian Ratliff of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said the wolves killed the 40-pound herding dog on Friday about 150 yards from the rancher’s house.

Ratliff said the Keating pack has 10 wolves, and some have tracking collars. He said a signal from one of those collars showed it was on the property where the herding dog was killed.

Ratliff urged ranchers to bury carcasses because even heavily decomposed carcasses will attract wolves.

“That's the number one thing you can do to keep wolves away,” he told the Baker City Herald.

The area where the herding dog was killed is about 15 miles northeast of Baker City in the Keating Valley. Ratliff said the wolves typically stay on the fringes of the valley. He said the attack on the herding dog was the farthest into the valley wolves had traveled.

Ratliff said he advised the rancher to haze the wolves, and the rancher said he would try to drive them away.