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A wolf escaped its British sanctuary and gave social media a lot to talk about

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By Chris Pilcher
A wolf escaped its British sanctuary and gave social media a lot to talk about

A wolf, which escaped from an animal sanctuary in West Berkshire on Thursday morning, has been safely recaptured after six hours on the run.

It was initially thought the animal, called Torak, had fled from the Wolf Conservation Trust's site in Beenham after strong winds damaged fencing.

But the sanctuary is now claiming the enclosure gate may have been left open deliberately.

Thames Valley Police said the wolf travelled about eight miles before it was caught near the M4 motorway at around 13:40 GMT.

A spokesperson said: "It was safely detained by officers and staff from the sanctuary, who had been working to recapture it."

There had been concerns for the safety of locals and the wolf after it went missing.

A number of wildlife experts urged UK police not to shoot the wolf, fearing a repeat of similar instances of escaped animals in the country over recent years.

It was feared police would kill the wolf if the animal ran on to the motorway.

Several social media users followed the drama unfold throughout the day.

But the reasons behind how the wolf was able to escape remain a mystery.

There were suggestions the gate to the wolf's enclosure may have been deliberately left open. Other reports claim heavy wind might have blown down the surrounding fences.

Thames Valley Police had earlier warned residents in Berkshire via text to stay inside. Schools within the local area were asked to keep pupils indoors until further notice.

There were a number of sightings at various locations as far as ten miles away from the wolf's sanctuary. The 12-year old animal was eventually caught safe and well in the village of Curridge, lured into a caged trailer and driven away.