But Terry Doolittle of Mattawan said authorities were skeptical when he reported the discovery because his last name is the same as a fictional children's book character who spoke to animals. He said authorities wary of a "Dr. Doolittle" prank at first didn't believe him.
Doolittle said he was mowing alongside of his house when he "saw a tail move."
An animal rescue employee who owns six other alligators eventually helped dislodge the creature, and took it home until someone claims it.
Authorities believe the alligator is a family pet.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Van Buren County Sheriff's Office.