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LUNENBERG -- It was turning out to be a normal, quiet night at the McDonald household on Tuesday, until the family's basset hound started yapping up a storm in the backyard, a family member said.  

\"The dog was barking in back,'\" said Nicholas McDonald of 1065 Northfield Road. \"And I saw this weird thing come out of the woods ... It looked like a huge rat.\"  

The animal was probably a capybara, a large rodent native to the jungles of Central and South America, according to Bridget McAlice, a Mass Wildlife biologist.  

McAlice said capybaras can grow up to three feet in length and two feet in height at the shoulders. The rodents can weigh up to 140 pounds, McAlice said.
 

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I wonder how it got to Lunenberg? I wonder if it was purchased as a pet then released? Awfully strange.
Once in a while Franny will let out an eerie "Arooooo" and when I look out my backyard there'll be a coyote or a deer (and this is Boston!?!) I know he can't see them and we're in the house so I still wonder how he knows they're out there.
 

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Someone wrote in a comment to the article saying the rodent came from Marshall Farm which is a big apple orchard, seasonal resturant and owned by the family who's taught dog training in the area for 50 years. So maybe they have a petting zoo or they train rats. :wink:

About Francis sensing the animals-"the nose knows!" I saw a moose walking down my road a couple of weeks ago and my neighbor saw a bear that same week. And I live 1/4 mile from Route 2. :shock:
 
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