DNA test are being run on a mystery animal shot this month in Montana which is puzzling experts due to its unusual features.

First thought to be a wolf, the animal was shot when it was spotted in a pasture with livestock.

 However, on closer inspection it became unclear what species it was,  prompting state wildlife officials to take DNA samples.

Fish, Wildlife and Parks regional spokesman Bruce Auchly said the animal’s front claws and canine teeth are too short and its ears are too tall in proportion to its skull for it to be a purebred wolf.

The animal was shot on May 16 near the town of Denton.

Images show the creature's paws are unusually small for a wolfCredit:

Wolf management specialist Ty Smucker says the animal could be a wolf-dog hybrid.

Experts also point out the abnormal size of the animal's ears in proportion to its skull, and smaller than normal canine teethCredit:

The DNA tests have not yet been returned.

Warden Zach Norris says the rancher was within his rights to kill the animal because it was seen near livestock, domestic dogs and children. 

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