Toni Tensen had just let her dogs go out in the night when her Toy Poodle, Stanley, was taken by a coyote. The 11-year-old had just stepped forwards in the bushes to investigate something suspicious earlier this year. Tesen only saw a ‘fat tail’ before Stanley vanished under the animal’s jaw. All of it happened within seconds.
“Stanley was there one minute, and the coyote was there the next,” Tesen said.
This wasn’t a one-time incident. The 10-mile radius around Detroit’s western border is always more at risk of coyote attacks. In fact, this is even prevalent in places such as Washington D.C., Boston, Chicago, Detroit, and Los Angeles.
It’s assumed that this is because of the present changes in wildlife caused due to human activities. Wildfires, lack of rainfall and deforestation are among the prime reasons why these animals are veering away from their normal homes.
But it hasn’t lessened the coyote’s number. They’re used to adaptation now and they can live individually as well as with their spouses. Able to hunt at any time of a day, they usually feed on animals, insects and fruits.
“Coyotes are without a doubt the most versatile carnivores in America, maybe even worldwide,” animal behaviourist, Marc Bekoff said.
They are predatory, unafraid of humans. Which is why the pets are so easily hunted. Incidents of dogs being ripped from their leashes or stolen from yards even, when it’s surrounded with 6-foot high fences, aren’t unheard of.
wildlife communications coordinator for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Holly Vaughn, believes this is because of human behaviours of the last few decades.
Despite their 20-50 pound weight, coyotes are dangerous creatures. With the speed of 40 miles per hour, they can snip at their prey’s legs after they’ve successfully isolated them after hours of stalking.
After they make their victims helpless and incapable of escaping, they bite their necks to compress their windpipes. Suffocation and shock are one of the primary causes of death among pets.
Coyotes usually eat their bigger victims on site while smaller pets are carried away from the place, to an area unbeknownst to the parents.
This is what needs to be done if your pet is being attacked. Remember that it’s the first 15 seconds that count. After that, the damage might be too critical on your pet’s body. You might have heard of ‘hazing’ or scaring the coyote away–but they aren’t as effective.
Scaring them away doesn’t save your pet. First of all, you have to make sure your pet is protected. Especially their neck and body. For this, the Predator Vest is the best investment.
Since it’s made out of bite-resistant Kevlar, it gives the best protection to your dogs.
The vest is so light and flexible that your dog won’t even feel it. It moulds into their body and even has reflective strips for night-time and a D-ring to attach a leash.
Even though coyote attacks can be terrifying, don’t injure them. Hazing is a more appropriate way to deal with them. The Humane Society suggests “loud and large” method. Here are some instructions by them:
- Boldly face the coyote while yelling and waving your arms – do not get close!
- Use noisemakers such as whistles, air horns, bells, or soda cans filled with pennies
- Throw sticks, rocks, or whatever is handy near (not at) the coyote
- Arm yourself with pepper spray, bear repellant, a walking stick, or an umbrella
- If you are in the yard, turn the hose on the animal.
In the case that the coyote doesn’t react to it, take hazing to the next level. Exaggerate your activity until they’re gone. Make sure they really are gone. They have the tendency to just hide and wait for the right opportunity to hunt their prey.
Never turn your backs on them. Never run. Coyote can smell your fear. In fact, if you ever see an animal acting weird as it might attack, CoyoteSmarts.org suggests slowly backing away. Don’t stop hazing the entire time and gradually get indoors. Then, contact your local animal control.
Since their homes are now being destroyed, coyotes are finding new places to look for food. Their cleverness, speed and determination is what makes them dangerous. So, take responsibilities for your pet’s life before something terrible happens. Here are a few advices.
- Don’t put food outside your home. It attracts animals.
- Tell your neighbours to do the same. It’s high time you start being responsible for your communal betterment.
- Don’t let your dogs out unless you are there with them.
- Keep them leashed when they’re out of home.
- Be more careful during night hours and dawn. Coyotes are more active then.
- Make sure you always have a horn or a whistle with you. Something to scare the coyotes away.
- If you have a water-gun with you, fill it with vinegar-water and take it around with you.
- Invest in Kevlar Predator Vest right now. Better safe than sorry!
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