A coyote with mange, or something more? Join me as I look at the what ifs of one of Texas' most famous historical creatures.
The United States is surprisingly rich in paranormal ghost and creature activity. But one of my good friends brought this cute little critter to my attention, and I just can’t get it out of my head: The Texas Chupacabra. Most people don’t believe it really exists, and others know it does. Then there are those who are convinced it’s a raccoon or coyote with mange. Mange? Really? Come on now. I’m not so sure what I believe yet, but I’m willing to take a look at all sides of the story.
Puerto Ricans gave this mysterious creature the name Chupacabra because of its bad habit of grabbing livestock and sucking the blood out of them (and they are particularly fond of goats).
Here are some things we know for sure: “Chupar” means "to suck," and “cabra” means "goat." Puerto Ricans gave this mysterious creature the name Chupacabra because of its bad habit of grabbing livestock and sucking the blood out of them (and they are particularly fond of goats). The dead livestock were all found with small circular holes on their chests or necks. We also know that the majority of witnesses to this crazy creature say it is the size of a small bear (about 3-4 feet high), has no hair, and has spiky spine-like protuberances going from its neck to its tail.
OK, so maybe not so cute and cuddly. Now, sightings began in Puerto Rico in the ’70s and continue even now in Texas. The victims are always high in number at each crime scene. Not just one or two, but from eight to well over 100. Several people have seen the Chupacabra, and a few have captured what they believed to be dead ones. A biologist at Texas State University in San Marcos who performed DNA tests on “chupacabras” found in 2007 came to the conclusion that they were just hairless coyotes. He also stated that a “chupacabra” found in Texas was a bald raccoon and that mange in carnivores is common. But what I found interesting was that he said animals with this type of affliction usually don’t live long enough to get to the bald state.
Here are some things that don’t add up to me: If the Chupacabra is just a coyote or raccoon with mange, why would the majority of witnesses say it is the size of a small bear? I’m no coyote/raccoon aficionado, but aren’t they significantly smaller than a bear? And, what about the spiky spines? Do raccoons have those?
And let’s not forget about the most important thing: The small circular holes where the blood leaves the bodies. Since when do coyotes and raccoons eat like that? Wouldn’t they tear the body apart instead of neatly puncturing the skin and sucking the blood out?
In my research on mange, I’ve discovered what I think to be two important facts: Animals with mange do not drink blood, and animals with mange lose their appetites. Hmm…