It was pretty scary when three people went missing and four died in tides off New York's coastline earlier this week.

It was also scary when numerous shark sightings were reported off Long Island's beaches.

But this whole monster-washes-up-on-shore-in-Montauk situation... we have no words for how scary this is.

Fox News, however, has a few. And so does Animal Planet's Jeff Corwin. Who thinks it's "a racoon. Or maybe a dog." Local residents also give their two cents (rather eloquently).

Carnivorous alien creature? U.S. Department of Agriculture animal experiment gone awry? Turtle? You decide:

UPDATE: New photos posted of the monster make it look a little more like a dog than we'd originally thought. (Thanks Diana) But we're still not discounting the escaped mutant government experiment theory.