ODFW is pinning the animal attack on a Southern Oregon man that made headlines last week on a male domestic dog, based on DNA testing.
Josh Trautman was adamant that he was attacked by a wolf that left him with lacerations up and down his left arm. He described the animal as appearing to weigh around 200 pounds, “black, brown and tan” in color with “the brightest golden eyes,” and said it tried to first bite his face, then his arm.
ODFW reports that after interviewing him and collecting his shirt and the bucket he was using to harvest mushrooms Sunday, April 9, they sent the evidence to a lab for DNA testing.
“The lab detected the DNA profile of a male domestic dog on multiple samples collected from bite marks on the shirt and on swabs from the bucket the victim used to defend himself. No DNA consistent with originating from a wolf was detected,” agency spokeswoman Michelle Dennehy reported this afternoon.
ODFW had been denied access to the attack site, which potentially meant it might go unresolved.
Dennehy said the results were shared with Trautman and Jackson County officials.
Wolf attacks on humans are “extremely rare,” according to ODFW, which adds wolves and other large predators typically avoid people, though two people have been killed by cougars in the Northwest the past decade and there were two bear attacks last year. Wolf attacks that have occurred have involved human-habituated wolves, like the deaths of a Canadian man and an Alaskan woman, or people with dogs, or sick wolves, said the agency. The greatest threat from canines comes from domestic dogs. Some people also own wolf hybrids; this area in particular is known for illegal marijuana farms.
“We wish the victim continued recovery,” Dennehy said in the brief statement.