Norwalk Mountain Lion Mystery: Buddy the Dog?

Buddy's owner helped get the dog to walk past the cameras at the same distance and pace for a video comparison

The mystery of an animal that was caught on surveillance video wandering through a Norwalk neighborhood may have been finally solved, with an area resident saying the stocky animal that was initially thought to be a lion appears to be her family's dog, a city spokesman said Thursday.

Norwalk public information officer Jeff Hobbs said the unidentified resident, who lives a few blocks away from the surveillance camera that captured grainy images of the animal around 3:45 a.m. July 29, called city officials Wednesday after seeing enhanced images on television.

She said both she and her children believe the animal on the video is their dog, Buddy.

City officials went to the family's home to check out the dog, but they could not definitively say if Buddy is the animal seen on the video.

So, in hopes of answering the mystery once and for all, a pair of security surveillance companies -- one from Irvine and one from Chino -- conducted a simulation Thursday night at the family's home in an attempt to recreate the security footage with Buddy, then compared it to the original video, Hobbs said.

The companies recreated the conditions from the night the security video was shot, and Buddy's owner helped get the dog to walk past the cameras at the same distance and pace.

An investigator who watched the footage said he believes it is, in fact, Buddy the dog, because the tail and height match, but only the animal in the video knows for sure.


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A state Department of Fish and Wildlife official said earlier this month that the animal on the video in the 11000 block of Tina Street does not appear to be a lion, but a "stocky dog."

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