Sasquatches and sea monsters tend to get the most love in the cryptic community, though most people don’t realize that they are often just a stone’s throw away from a more canine creature. If these stories are to be believed at all. From the Black Dog of England to the Inugami Yokai of Japan, the world is filled with supposed legends that tend to bark and bite more than others. This list will cover ten of these cryptids that can make the mythical werewolf seem a little less… well, mythical.
Related: Top 10 Cryptids Easily Explained By Real Animals
10 box wolf
The first entry on this list may seem like your basic werewolf by appearance, but his manners are certainly very different from his bloodthirsty relatives. Legend has it that if you come across this bipedal canine in the middle of the night, it will force you to carry it on your back to its destination.
“The Böxenwolf” is a name given to alleged werewolves found in the area near Hannover in Germany, mainly throughout the 18th century. Unlike modern werewolf legends, however, a simple bite and the full moon are not enough to usher in a transformation. Like most European werewolves at the time, the would-be wolf must make a pact with the devil himself in order to receive a leash or belt that causes a transformation. Then the user would have very little difficulty convincing peasants to hitchhike, no matter how uncomfortable the mode of transportation.
9 The Beast of Gevaudan
France is where this next cryptid can be found, and unlike most of the cryptids on this list, La Bête du Gévaudan, or The Beast of Gevaudan in English, was only detected over the course of three to four years before disappearing. forever. Also, unlike other canines on this list, La Bête racked up a body count, a body count that approached a hundred.
This canine, described as a wolf the size of a small bull with red fur and a panther’s tail, was first seen in 1764 when it attacked a young shepherdess named Jeanne Voulet. La Bête would continue to terrorize pre-revolutionary France until it came to the attention of King Louis XV himself, who routinely organized hunts to find the creature. It is even speculated that these expensive hunts were a catalyst for the French Revolution, although they would be an example of much of the excessive spending of the French aristocracy.
“Yokai” is the term used to describe a large number of legendary entities that hail from Japan, and a large number of Yokai possess animal forms. While the fox-like Kitsune is arguably the most well-known Yokai for having a canine appearance, Inugami is a spirit with the appearance of an upright dog. However, Inugami’s true hidden form is still a bit darker than just a mere spiritual-appearing dog. This canine’s head is actually a preserved, mummified dog’s head wrapped in ceremonial wrappings!
Legend has it that Inugami is a spirit servant summoned by sorcerers from Japan to follow all the orders bequeathed to them, be they benign or malevolent. This Yokai can also possess poor travelers afflicted with intense emotions and it is said that he enters his victim’s body through the ears. Inugami can even grant an unstoppable hunger to whomever he possesses, almost giving him dog-like features in the process, much like a werewolf’s bite. 
The Canary Islands, located off the northwest coast of Africa, are home to a particularly demonic dog known as the Tibicena. According to legend, these dogs with black fur and red eyes were actually demons from Guanche mythology by nature and it is even believed that they are children of the not very benevolent deity Guayota.
The Tibicena, however, have some variations in their reports; sometimes, they are described as having white fur, and sometimes, they are not even dogs, taking the form of a boar or even a sasquatch. One thing is for sure though, be sure to avoid the caves they call home. No matter its shape or origin, the Tibicena is a hunter of human flesh and is even said to have been seen well into the 20th century.
6 The Beast of Bray Road
The United States is no stranger to werewolf stories, though some claim that the upright canids of North America are more of a modern phenomenon than the werewolves of yesteryear. Towards the end of the 1980s, near the town of Elkhorn, Wisconsin, one particular road, whose name at this point is unsurprisingly Bray Road, fell victim to a particular wave of werewolf sightings.
Described as generally six feet (1.8 meters) tall, the beast is pretty much what one might imagine when first thinking of “werewolf”: clawed, with a wolf’s head, and covered in fur. One of the first witnesses, Doris Gipson, was driving a friend home from a Halloween party when the beast came out of a cornfield to chase her, even leaving scratch marks on Gipson’s videos. Sightings of this canine cryptid continue to this day, and Wisconsin native Linda Godfrey keeps a good record of the many, many dozen sightings in the Elkhorn area.
5 The Michigan Dog
The Beast of Bray Road actually has a cousin on the other side of Lake Michigan. And some even claim a connection between the two, as the Michigan Dogman first received a series of sightings in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, right around the same time the Beast of Bray Road was haunting Wisconsin. However, there is a twist; Radio DJ Steve Cook wrote a song about the supposed upright canine and played it on his radio station as an April Fool’s Day joke in 1987. When fans started calling, claiming to have seen the creature, he began to feel less like a joke.
Like the Beast, however, the Michigan Dogman resembles the standard werewolf without much variation, though he attacks far fewer cars and people than his other lycanthropic brethren. However, sightings continue to this day, and it is even claimed that Dogman was seen in 1937 when a man in Paris, Michigan saw him wandering through a pack of normal dogs.
4 Malawi Terror Beast
The next entry on this list is a verifiable real entity. In 2003, three people were tragically killed and sixteen injured in the Dowa district of the country of Malawi. When investigated, authorities believed it to be a rabid hyena, although the hyena was never captured. However, what the people in the area believed was that it was a much larger and more dangerous canine.
Another strange detail about this supposed hyena is the fact that it did not eat people completely, which is very strange for a predator. The Malawi Terror Beast would have two separate eruptions of occurrences that year, but would never be officially captured, despite official Malawi park rangers scouring the landscape for it.
Also known as “Loup-Garou” in France and the early French North American territories or “Lougarou” in Haiti. Even known by his Cajun name, “Rougarou,” this legendary walking canine shares many similarities with the well-known werewolf myth, with one exception. The rougarou has the ability to change into its lycanthropic form at will!
The rougarou is roughly described as the de facto werewolf, a furry, two-legged wolf with sharp teeth and claws. Whether the legend of the French-Canadian loup-garou or the Cajun rougarou came first is hard to say, but both supposed werewolves began their would-be legends in the 17th century. In the case of the rougarou, this canine prowled the swamp, punishing bad Catholics who did not practice Lent. 
It’s very hard to have a name that translates directly to “goat sucker” and still have an air of mischief. Such a feat, however, is accomplished by one of the most famous cryptids of all time, the Chupacabra. In haunting places from Chile to Texas to Mexico to Puerto Rico, this strange little hissing creature is by far the best-known cryptid in Latin America. Some even claim to have witnessed it as far north as Canada.
While the most common rational explanations for the Chupacabra are that it is definitely a mangy dog, actual legend claims that this being is more reptilian than canine. However, apart from a few spikes on its back, some claim that this legendary beast resembles the hairless Xola dog. However, the Chupacabra’s primary occupation is far more bloodthirsty than that of an actual dog, and it is said to be the culprit of many cattle mutilations, with a career spanning from the 1970s to the present day.
1 black dog
Perhaps the most enigmatic of the world’s creepy canines is the sinister Black Dog, found everywhere in England. Although Sir Arthur Conan Doyle The baskerville’s hound or even the Led Zeppelin band may be most people’s entry point into this particular legend, it goes far beyond a simple sighting in a single remote city.
Also sometimes known as The Barghest or Black Shuck, Black Dog begins its legend in 1677 in South Devon when a squire supposedly sold his soul to the devil and now rides a pack of black dogs as his steed. But the legend of this huge red-eyed mastiff dog has variations throughout England and sometimes in Wales and Scotland. They are said to be malicious or portend bad luck and are often found near supposedly haunted areas or places where particularly dramatic deaths have occurred.
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