Advice: Preventing Coyote Attacks

Vista Animal Hospital cares about your pets as if they were our own. Like you, we love living in a beautiful community with wonderful open space walking trails. However, we share these open spaces with wildlife. So it’s important to learn how to protect your pets against coyote attacks.

I received heartbreaking news recently about several pets who have been attacked or killed by coyotes, including my own dog. In light of these devastating events, I would like to take the time to share 5 tips on how to protect your pet against coyote attacks.

1 Don’t attract them

Do not encourage coyotes to consider your house a source of food. Do not leave pet food outside. Take down bird feeders. And keep your garbage containers inside the garage or install a lid locking strap. Bird feeders attract pretty birds, but they also attract coyotes that eat birds. Don’t open up a fast-food coyote restaurant by providing a bird feeder to attract birds, rabbits, and rodents they can eat. Fruiting trees and Koi ponds are also sources of food that might attract coyotes.

2 Haze them (in a humane and non-violent way)

Harassing coyotes each time they are not where they should be helps to keep them afraid of humans so they will leave us and our pets alone. This only works if they are hazed each and every time they are in our playgrounds, backyards, or if they do not act afraid of people.

CLICK to read the Humane Society’s complete guide to coyote hazing.

  • Scare Them: Yell and wave your arms, use your coat as a cape to look larger and carry a walking stick.
  • Use Noisemakers: Your voice, air horns, “shaker” cans full of pennies or marbles, or just bang some pots and pans.
  • Small Projectiles: Throw sticks, small rocks or balls towards the coyote to scare him off.
  • Spray Them: Use a garden hose with power sprayer, water guns with vinegar water, mace or bear spray.

3 Repel them and don’t give predators a place to hide

If allowed, clear all brush and vegetation within 10 ft of your fence line. Coyotes have the ability to go over, under, or through many types of fences. So, install a fence that is a minimum of 6 ft tall. Use PVC piping or coyote roll bars. Bury the fence a foot below ground level to prevent digging under your fence. Use deterrent alarms (if allowed by your HOA) to protect your yard: Flashing red lights for night time protection (Nite guard) and motion activated alarms and sprinklers for daytime.

4 Protect your dog

Keep your dog on 4 ft-6 ft leash. Always supervise your pets when going outside from dusk to dawn when coyotes are most active. You must accompany them outside; don’t just stand at the back door. Keep your yard well-lit if your pet needs to relieve themselves at night. Use a Kevlar Coyote Vest to protect your dog in the event of an attack when outside.

5 Protect your cat

The best way to protect your cats is to keep them as indoor only cats. Coyotes have an easy time hunting cats. If you do have an outdoor cat, give her a chance with an escape post that is easy to climb for a cat. It should be taller than 6 ft high with a perch on top.

Report Your Coyote Encounter Here

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