"These dogs, these packs are dangerous, we don't want anybody getting hurt," Cumberland County Animal Control Director John Lauby said.
The dogs Lauby is referring to are among six stray dogs captured over the weekend by a wildlife damage control company that works for the county. Animal control officers say they use baited traps along with tranquilizer darts to snare the pack dogs.
Lauby says for now, Fayetteville police and Cumberland County sheriff's deputies will observe and report locations of any stray or wild dog packs they see, but they are not under new orders to shoot and kill.
"If we have to do off post euthanasia, [I] want my officers to do that," Lauby said. "That's our responsibility as distasteful as it is."
Animal control officials say as many as 150 wild dogs may be roaming Fayetteville's streets. Packs have been reported in more than a dozen neighborhoods across the city.
Lauby says not all pack dogs are wild. Some dogs are pets that have been abandoned.
Animal control says some of the confirmed wildlife rabies cases this year are in neighborhoods where the wild dogs roam. The concern is that the dog packs could come in contact with a rabid animal and then go after humans or theft pets.
Wild or stray, animal control officers say for now, any and all dogs on the street with no collar or rabies tag will be picked up. Pet owners whose animals are not vaccinated could face a stiff fine.
"There is a $100 fine for not having your dogs vaccinated, or not having a county or rabies tag on the dog when it's off your property," Lauby added.
Officers say you can't take any chances with rabies.
The wild dog tracking teams will be out every night.
Animal control has set up a hotline. Call (910) 321-6861 to report locations of stray or wild dog packs.