A unique hybrid species of a dog and fox, discovered accidentally after a car accident, has died, according to a report in The Telegraph. The creature named ‘dogxim’ was found in Brazil in 2021 and taken to Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul veterinary hospital. The DNA test carried out there confirmed that the animal was the first-ever dog-fox hybrid. The Brazilian government has launched an investigation after the keepers of the animal failed to report its death, the outlet further said.
The reason and time of the death of ‘dogxim’ is not known.
The Pampas fox-dog hybrid had been living at Sao Braz conservation centre since November 2021. But when experts studying the unique animal asked for its photographs, they were told it had died six months ago.
“We are very sad about her death, especially because we do not have the answers about the exact date and the cause of her death,” Dr Rafael Kretschmer, a cytogeneticist who confirmed the hybrid nature of ‘dogxim’, told The Telegraph.
“We only discovered that she died because I called Mantenedouro Sao Braz to request some recent photos of the hybrid,” the expert further said.
Flavia Ferrari, a conservationist who worked with the animal, said the female was healthy and there were no indication of any health problem.
Talking about the discovery, scientists said they were surprised to see ‘dogxim’ rejecting the food given to dogs but accepting small rats.
“Another behaviour of the pampas fox was observed when she climbed the bush that was in the environment where she was kept,” researcher Cristina Araujo Matzenbacher told Newsweek.
Its discovery was published in the journal MDPI in which the experts said they used cytogenetics and other high-grade techniques while testing the DNA of the animal.