© Grand Haven Tribune
Several times in the past decade, West Michigan newspapers have reported on a strange canine-like creature people claim to have seen in woodlands - not the legendary Chubacabra, but the Michigan Dogman.
Some eyewitnesses are convinced they have seen it - like one man who posted his opinion on an Internet message board.
"If you also live anywhere north of Grand Rapids in Michigan, how can you not know about the Dogman? It is one of the largest legends in the area and the story has been around for years," he wrote. "It seems to me it is more than just a huge fantasy."
The Dogman is reported to have a canine-like head, human-like body, reflective eyes and walks upright.
According to one Ottawa County resident, a creature fitting the description of the Dogman appeared in Grand Haven from 1993-94. "Ben," who was a young teenager at the time, claims to have seen the creature not once, but three times. He believes each time he was seeing a different creature, in what could have been a pack taking refuge in a Grand Haven Township park.
In 1993, after dark, Ben was hiking the trails in Hofma Nature Preserve with as many as four friends when, passing the float bridge near the center of the preserve, they heard a sound to their right. Ben spied what resembled a dog standing behind a tree on a ridge above, approximately 70 feet away.
"I thought it was just a dog walking along, then it stood up on its hind legs," Ben said. "One of its feet gripped a branch on the tree. Our eyes met and we just stared at each other for about five minutes, then it ran off."
According to Ben, the second encounter occurred in December that same year in the driveway of his family's home on Lakeshore Drive. Ben went outdoors in the cold to start his mother's car.