There's a lot of fans in the dogman community, and interest in the subject seems to be steadily growing. Recently there was a dogman symposium in Ohio. Check out this review of the event by guest speaker Nick Redfern:
This past weekend – August 5-6 – I spoke at the Defiance, Ohio-based Dogman Symposium. It was an event organized by good mate and creature-seeker Ken Gerhard. Even at this early stage you may be wondering: what is a Dogman? Well, I’ll tell you. It must be said that it’s very difficult – to the point of being near-impossible – to not think about the Dogman in werewolf-style terms. Indeed, everything about the Dogman practically screams “Werewolf!” Or, maybe, howls. As strange as it may sound, reports of Dogmen proliferate, and particularly so in the likes of Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
The name of the beast is very apt: it’s a large, humanoid creature, covered in hair. Bigfoot? Nope. This one has a long and pronounced snout and large pointed ears, and it walks on two and four limbs. Hence the werewolf parallels. Of course, when it comes to the matter of the Dogman, just about everything related to the phenomenon is controversial, but that doesn’t take away the fact that people see and report such things – and on a regular basis, too. Check out, for example, Linda Godfrey’s book, The Michigan Dogman. And that’s just one of many examples. All of which brings us back to Ken Gerhard.
When, earlier this year, Ken told me he was planning the Dogman Symposium, and asked if I would come on-board, I thought it was a great idea. After all, as time goes by it becomes more and more difficult to come up with something original for a conference and the attendees. Yes, Dogman has been discussed at gigs, but not to the extent where these weird things have had their own, entire conference – so to speak.
There was a very good reason why Ken chose Defiance, Ohio as the location for the conference. Located in northwest Ohio, the town of Defiance is home to around 17,000 people. In the summer of 1972, Defiance became a hot-spot for monster-seekers when locals reported nothing less than a werewolf in their midst. Thankfully, the creature did not stay around for long. But, from July to August of that year the man-beast most assuredly left its personal calling-card. The town was under siege. Children were kept indoors after school. The local police carefully combed the neighborhood by night. Werewolf fever was everywhere. And the legend of the Defiance werewolf still persists.
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