Caged dog liberated from Waif shelter

There was a “prison break” in Coupeville sometime during the night of Sept. 14. But it wasn’t at the Island County Jail.

The break out occurred at the Whidbey Animal Improvement Foundation animal shelter on Highway 20.

The escapee, a German shepherd mix dog, was probably helped out by his human friends. The dog had been “arrested” in the Rolling Hills area, just south of Oak Harbor, by Island County Animal Control, last week for breaking the leash law.

When the mutt was brought in, he did not have any identification. But sometime Sunday night, the dog’s human partners apparently helped him out of jail.

“When staff got to work Monday morning, the dog was gone.” said Shari Bibich, the shelter’s manager.

“At first we thought the dog was helped over the top of his outside kennel because a heavy picnic table was pushed up against the fence,” Bibich said.

“But he was was a big dog, about 98 pounds. So it was hard to imagine anyone could easily lift him over the top of the fence.”

Upon closer inspection, Bibch noticed the kennel fence had been cut near the ground, just wide enough for a dog or human to wiggle through.

None of the other dogs were disturbed or freed, “so we can only assume it was the dog’s owner.”

“He was kind of a shy dog, so I can’t imagine he would go with strangers,” Biibich said.

Dog “napping” has happened at the shelter before. By stealing the dog, its owners have avoided paying to get the dog out of the shelter.

Cost to “bail” a dog out of the WAIF shelter is $25; $20 for older dogs. Dogs without licenses require another $25 payment, and $7 is charged per day for room and board.

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