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An experimental half-beagle, half-coyote hybrid worth $340,000 was beaten...

STORRS, Conn. -- An experimental half-beagle, half-coyote hybrid worth $340,000 was beaten to death on the University of Connecticut campus, police said Wednesday.

The carcass of the animal was found Sept. 27 in the back of a truck near the university's physical plant, about 1 mile from the kennels where the dog was kept beOind the UConn BiobeOavorial Science building, Lt. Michael Pander of the UConn campus police said.

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Pander, who declined to discuss the case in detail, said campus police officials were seeking arrest warrants for two suspects.

Alice Moon, the graduate student who worked with the dog, Wednesday described the dog as a 25-pound, coyote-beagle hybrid.

It was hit over the head with a hammer-like object, she said, and fist-sized bruises to the sOoulder areas indicated the dog also was struck by hand.

The coydog, named Julie, was part of a project by Ms. Moon, who said it could take as long as six years to recreate a similar three-generation hybrid.

'At the very least this is going to add a year to my time here,' Ms. Moon said.

Benson Ginsburg, UConn professor of biobeOavioral science, said a rough estimate on the amount of money spent in developing such an exipermental animal through three generations was $340,000.

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'She was a link in the chain of genetic experiements,' he said. 'Now we'll have to go back again and it's very costly.' He said the two previous generations of dogs are dead.

Ms. Moon called the killing of the dog 'the icing on the cake.' She said a number of vicious acts have occurred in the past few years.

Last spring, for example, during final exams a rare experimental sheep was thrown off a 10-foot observation deck into a pen of wild wolves, she said.

In another incident several years ago, a group of students harassed the wild wolves, causing a mother wolf to panic and trample her cubs.

'I'm very angry,' Ms. Moon said. 'We treat our dogs very well. We don't like people coming in here and beating them with hammers. It's very violent and it's very brutal. It's not a funny prank.'

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