Texas 'chupacabra' dead: Family says animal was euthanized

RATCLIFFE, Texas

The hairless animal, with large claws and a ferocious growl, gained national attention after a DeWitt County family captured it, claiming it was the chupacabra, a mythical creature that supposedly attacks livestock.

According to the family, the animal was humanely put to sleep by a local shelter because they believed it was suffering. The name of the shelter has been withheld because of the number of threats it has been receiving.

The Dewitt County game warden says he believes it was best to euthanize the animal for the safety of other animals and pets.

The game warden says after studying the animal's mannerisms, he believes it was most likely a raccoon -- not the chupacabra.

According to legend, chupacabras suck the blood of cows and goats. Although there's never been real evidence the creature exists, sightings of chupacabras have been reported from Latin America to the southern U.S.

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