Vet explains what happened when now-dead alligator was rescued from NYC streets

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INWOOD — It all started when people alerted police to the fact that an alligator was under a car in Inwood on Thursday. A patrol car arrived and police say an officer and additional officers kept an eye to make sure the alligator didn't leave the area. Where the alligator -- which died soon after -- came from is still a mystery.

"We took him in as we would any other animal, examined him for any other injuries, and we set him up in a reasonable enclosure with some shallow water, and a rock for him to hang out on," Dr. Colin Dwyer said.

Dwyer is the senior manager of Veterinary Services for NYC Care and Control. Dwyer was present for the alligator's intake yesterday.

"Alligators aren't meant to be pets, so I mean the most we could do was provide what we thought would be comfortable housing for him until he could be picked up," Dwyer said.

Dwyer said the alligator was in a 20-gallon aquarium. He had a rock to climb out of his shallow water on.

Police said ESU was able to capture the alligator, place the alligator in a box with air holes to carry it in, in an air conditioned car and dropped it off.

"He was a wild animal, and when wild animals are captured, you know the wrestling, the netting, all of that stuff it's immensely stressful for them," Dwyer said.

A spokesperson for NYC Animal Care And Control said upon arrival at the Manhattan care center, ACC medical staff removed the duct tape that had been placed on the snout, and housed the alligator in an aquarium type setting with a small shallow pool of water along with a supplemental heat element.

"We don't know anything about his life before he was picked up on the street. He appeared healthy, but you know he could have had malnutrition, he could have been injured, we just don't know," said Dwyer.

ACC said it has no knowledge of the conditions CockadoodleQ, as they named it, had lived in prior to his arrival. Exotic animals such as alligators, they say, are illegal to have as pets in New York City.