Coyotes have been spotted throughout our community. If you have any doubt that the animals live in our area, the picture on the right shows a coyote that was found dead on Angelique Street near Cypress Canyon Park Drive on Sept. 26. It appears to have been hit by a vehicle.

This is a hot topic in Scripps Ranch. The conversation continues with tips on how to keep pets safe and where to share information about coyote attacks and sightings.

Protect Your Pets

After reading yet another story of an encounter between a small dog and a coyote in Scripps Ranch, I felt the need to offer advice to dog owners to help prevent this sort of thing from happening again.

1. Keep your dogs on leash at all times! Not only is it the law, but it keeps your pet no farther than six feet away from you. The law says that leashes must be no more than six feet long. Anything longer than that—such as an “Extenda-Leash”—does not allow you to properly control your dog and pull him or her close to you and pick him up should danger present itself.

2. Vary your routine! Coyotes are opportunistic hunters and will stalk their prey for days, even weeks, before they attack. Coyotes watch for patterns, and when they see the same animals at the same time in the same place they will take advantage of that. Be especially cautious at dawn, dusk, and at night! These are the times when coyotes are most active.

3. Use caution when letting dogs out into your fenced yard at those “danger times.” A six-foot fence will not stop a coyote—they can scale these with ease. Consider taking small dogs into your yard on a leash during those times, or for maximum security, install a product called a “Coyote Roller” on top of your fence. Just do an internet search.

4. While walking your dog, consider carrying a stick. Should a coyote approach you, swing the stick around and yell at it. If it gets too close, you can use the stick to defend yourself and your dog.

Joni Palumbo, SR Resident

“Coyotes in San Diego”

After my story ran in the October issue of the SRCA Newsletter, I was inundated with emails from people in our community who have had their dogs or cats killed by coyotes. One lady lost her dog to a coyote eight days after our dog, Buffy. Her husband took their dog out to go potty, stepped inside to grab water for his daughter, turned around and a coyote had jumped over the fence and snatched their dog, Lolita. Another lady had her 25 pounds beagle attacked by two coyotes. They rushed him to the vet for treatment.

Another lady was pushing her baby in a stroller with her dog on a leash. A coyote was stalking them from behind, so other people chased the coyote away. However, it took some time as the coyote wasn’t afraid. Another man had his dog taken the same way we lost Buffy. A girl walking her large dog in the morning was stalked and tried to keep the coyote away from her and her dog by throwing rocks and sticks. There are many other incidents.

We started a Facebook site called “Coyotes in San Diego.” We created it to give people a place to report the loss of a pet, as most killings go unreported. Also you can let others know about coyote sightings, incidents, ways to protect yourself and your pet, and tell your story so your pet will not be forgotten. Last but not least, we hope the site can help others so they do not have to endure the heartache of losing a beloved dog or cat. Search Facebook for our site and get in on the discussion.

Pam Mott, SR Resident