SAN DIEGO — A coyote rescued from an illegal jaw trap on a residential property in the Skyline neighborhood was released into the wild last week, animal officials said.

The rescue, which occurred on Feb. 17, involved an adult female coyote who was found dangling on a chain link fence from a jaw trap attached to her left front leg, Nina Thompson with the San Diego Humane Society stated in press release Friday.

The animal suffered soft tissue damage to her lower leg from the trap, but did not have any fractures or permanent damage, per the Humane Society. The medical team also performed a tooth extraction, which was probably due to her trying to free herself from the trap.

A coyote is set free on March 10, 2023, after rehabilitating with the San Diego Humane Society. (San Diego Humane Society)

After three weeks in care with San Diego Humane Society’s Project Wildlife team, the coyote was released in a greenbelt area close to where she was found.

“When she first came in, we didn’t think she was going to make it,” said Andy Blue, campus director of San Diego Humane Society’s Ramona Wildlife Center. “Typically, animals caught in these awful traps have such extensive damage, that they are unable to return to the wild and fend for themselves.”

The incident is being investigated as felony animal cruelty, according to the organization’s law enforcement.

“While we can’t comment on the specifics of this case, the public should know that these traps are illegal,” said Lt. Regina Price with San Diego Humane Society’s Humane Law Enforcement. “Not only are they extremely inhumane, anyone can get caught in them —children, pets and wildlife. There is no excuse for placing them in the community.”

The San Diego Humane Society asks to report if you suspect animal cruelty or neglect in your neighborhood by calling 619-299-7012 (press 1 to report animal abuse).