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Dog discovers alligator in Desert Hot Springs backyard

American alligator found in Desert Hot Springs
A dog made an unusual discovery Monday afternoon in a Desert Hot Springs backyard: a young American alligator.

The 3-foot-long gator was stuck between a chain link and wood fence by the 1-year-old beagle. The dog began barking loudly and alerted its owner, who called animal services officers, according to officials.

The reptile appears to be a young American alligator, which are illegal to own as pets, said John Welsh, spokesman for the Riverside County Department of Animal Services. It was unclear how the alligator ended up in the backyard.

The agency said it would work with exotic-animal sanctuaries to find a home for the alligator. 

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Photo: Alligator that was recovered from a Desert Hot Springs yard. Credit: Riverside County Department of Animal Services

 
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