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12-foot alligator attacks dog at Florida park, owner reportedly frees pet by jumping on gator's back

A dog has been hospitalized in Central Florida after a 12-foot alligator attacked the canine earlier this week.

The dog had been taken out for a walk on May 12 near the Little Econ River at Riverside Park, which is located in Oviedo, Florida.

Lisa McDonald, communications manager for the City of Oviedo, confirmed that there was a reported alligator attack that happened on Friday, but the exact time is unknown since no 911 call was made and park staff were notified a day later.

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“In this area, there are several large alligators,” McDonald wrote to Fox News Digital on Wednesday.

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She noted that Riverside Park has multipurpose fields with two large pavilions on either side of an old volleyball field to the west.

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“On May 13, 2023, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) received a call from an individual who reported that an approximate 12’ alligator bit her dog at Riverside Skate Park (1608 Lockwood Blvd., Oviedo, Fl. 32765),” a spokesperson for the FWC wrote in an email to Fox News Digital on Wednesday. “A permit was issued at the direction of the City of Oviedo Parks and Recreation. A trapper responded and removed a 12’6″ alligator, which has been transferred to a processor.”

The FWC’s Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program (SNAP) proactively addresses alligator threats in developed areas by dispatching contracted nuisance alligator trappers who handle removal.

Florida has an alligator population of about 1.3 million across the state’s 67 counties, according to the FWC.

To minimize the risks of experiencing an alligator attack, the FWC advises that pets be leashed and kept away from shorelines of water bodies.

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Florida residents and visitors who need to report a potentially dangerous alligator can call the FWC’s toll-free Nuisance Alligator Hotline at 866-FWC-GATOR (866-392-4286).

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