Mysterious 'white wolf' may belong to Boise man: 'It was a shock'
BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- There's rumors going around in Virginia about a white wolf roaming the mountains near the small town of Chesterfield.
Last weekend, two local residents there saw a large white wolf-looking animal feasting on a deer carcass, dragging it deeper into the woods.
Word quickly spread about the white myth when CBS affiliate WTVR ran a story about the creature (see below).
But it's no wild animal.
Boise resident Robert Clanton says the wild animal seen in the video and pictures are his wolf-hybrid Dooley, who disappeared in Virginia nearly four years ago. The Treasure Valley man was on the east coast visiting his family and brought along his three dogs.
One night, however, a massive thunderstorm hit the region -- startling the pups. He was able to find two of them, but Dooley just disappeared.
"I just searched and searched for probably two or three weeks," Clanton said. "He was playful, he was a member of the family, he wanted to be with you all the time."
A year had passed and he returned to Virginia once again for another search effort. Hope dwindled with each passing day. He had his two other dogs at home in Boise, but he always felt like a piece of the puzzle was missing.
"There was an intense sense of loss," he said. "But what can you do? You're helpless -- I did all I could."
Then the phone rang. It was his brother in Virginia.
He watched the local news report about a white wolf that was spotted four or five miles from where his dog went missing. Within seconds of seeing the report, he knew it was Dooley.
"The head shape, particularly the tail, and the color, I mean I'm about 99.9 percent sure it's my animal," he said. "It was a shock to find out he was maybe still around."
Call it divine intervention, or just luck, the Boise man says he's excited to be reunited with Dooley.
He's also excited to fulfill a promise he made a long time ago. Nearly four years ago he planned to give his great-granddaughter Dooley as a gift.
"I'd like to keep a promise to that little girl," Clanton said. "I mean, I made a promise."