UPDATE: Judge allows use of dogs in WI wolf hunt - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

UPDATE: Judge allows use of dogs in WI wolf hunt

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MADISON (WKOW) -- A Madison judge ruled that people can use dogs to hunt wolves in Wisconsin, but he blocked hunters from training dogs to go after the animals.

Dane County Circuit Judge Peter Anderson ruled Friday that the Department of Natural Resources had an obligation to tweak a pre-existing rule that allows people to train dogs on wild animals to address problems that would arise between dogs and wolves. He found the rule is invalid and can't be used to support training on wolves.

Anderson said the DNR had no duty to impose restrictions on actually hunting wolves with dogs.

A group of humane societies filed a lawsuit last year claiming the DNR did not place any restrictions on how wolf hunters could use dogs.

Anderson temporarily banned the use of dogs while he weighed the case.

Wisconsin's wolf hunt season began in October and closed last month. Hunters took 117 animals.

In a statement, DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp said, "We are pleased that Judge Anderson removed the injunction that banned the use of dogs for hunting wolves. However, we are disappointed with Judge Anderson's decision to prohibit training of dogs to hunt wolves. We will continue to seek input from the public and from stakeholders – including tribes – as we continue to develop permanent rules on the wolf season, and the use of dogs for both training and hunting of wolves."

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MADISON (WKOW) -- A Madison judge is expected to make a decision Friday whether dogs can be used to hunt wolves.

A group of humane societies filed a lawsuit earlier this year saying the Department of Natural Resources didn't put enough rules into place on how hunters can train and use dogs to hunt wolves. Dane County Circuit Judge Peter Anderson temporarily banned the use of dogs while he weighs the case. He's expected to issue a final ruling Friday afternoon.

The wolf hunt began in October and closed last month. Hunters took 117 animals. That was one more than the kill limit.

The DNR is also planning to put restrictions on dogs in permanent wolf hunt rules it's developing. But attorneys for the humane societies worry those rules may not be ready by the next hunt.

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