ANCHORAGE - A family pet died when a spring-loaded baited trap set up in Chugach State Park near a trail snapped shut on the dog's neck.
The trap was set up less than 150 yards from a trail head along Turnagain Arm, said Mel Strauch of Anchorage, owner of the 15-month-old dog named Oreo Cookie.
Strauch said the dog may have died instantly when the Conibear trap snapped shut. The incident happened early Monday afternoon, soon after the start of a cross-country ski trek. Strauch said the trap, which was about 40 feet off the trail, was baited with animal parts and blood.
The trap was set close to the bank of Indian Creek near the parking lot at the Indian trail head. There is a trapping season for some animals in that area of the state park, but it ended Feb. 28.
"This is an illegally set trap," said Mike Goodwin, the park's chief ranger, who visited the site Tuesday with Lisa Alleva, an officer of the Alaska Bureau of Wildlife Enforcement.
Park rangers and the bureau are investigating the case, hoping to find out who set the trap, Goodwin said. It appears the trap was not part of a trap line.