My Bichon Roxy has many talents. She has mastered all kinds of tricks (anything for a treat), pulls us along while hiking snowy mountains and rocks her Ghetto Mittens. But last week she impressed me as the fiercest Bichon in the land when she came in contact with a coyote.
Of course I reacted like anyone with a computer and added an update on Facebook. In my defense, it did ask me, “What’s going on Susie?”
Coyotes have been very aggressive here in Boulder County. Several people have been attacked and nipped on trails during the day. It is not unusual to lose a small pet to a coyote’s insatiable appetite, but they no longer have any fear of humans.
In response, the Police Department began patrolling the Boulder Creek Trail in an attempt to scare them off.
When I heard that there may be a logical reason for their strange behavior, I wrote an editorial for the Boulder Daily Camera Newspaper. It was printed today!
Last week, my 15-pound Bichon Frise started yipping outside. Our Niwot backyard borders a pond and open space. I raced to the window and watched her chase, yes chase, a coyote across the lawn. It stopped on the property line while I ran out in stocking feet and screamed at my dog to come inside. This happened at 11 a.m. That coyote cruised our property for three hours.
They used to be more aggressive during dusk and dawn, but now they’re active throughout the day.
I mentioned this story to my daughter’s friend whose family lives in Longmont. Last summer, she stepped into the backyard with her Chihuahua. A huge coyote charged them. She scooped up her petite pooch and raced inside. Her parents called their homeowner’s association. Apparently, someone from their neighborhood had been feeding them. They were informed that the pack had gotten used to people and were no longer afraid.
This could explain why one followed a woman “like a dog” on the Boulder Creek Path.
I know the location of coyote dens in my neighborhood and believe they have every right to be here. I’m responsible for my little dog’s safety and take steps accordingly, but feeding them is changing the coyote’s natural behavior. This could result in more attacks on pets, humans and overpopulation. It’s cramping my style since I can’t let my pup run out her doggy door during the day without the fear that she could get munched.
Here’s a big shout out to everyone who thinks that feeding wild animals is helping them. You aren’t! You’re messing with the ecosystem! You may even be indirectly responsible for the harm they are causing humans and their pets.
Maybe there should be a fine imposed for feeding coyotes. What do you think?
Danny and I woke up at 2:00 AM this morning to a wildly howling coyote on our deck right outside our window. It screamed its unearthly yelp for a minute as if to say, “Roxy. I know where you live. I’ll be watching.” Okay. That’s normal behavior. Now, for God’s sake, sleep during the day so she can go back outside!
What do you think about feeding coyotes or any wild furry creatures?
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