OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    In Response to Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes):
    [QUOTE]just wanted to add that where I grew up we had coyotes all over, and they had no qualms about going into people's unfenced yards to get cats or small dogs. 3 neighborhood cats were taken by coyotes. One small poodle as well.
    Posted by pinkkittie27[/QUOTE]

    Most naturalists will tell you, that is a sign that either they are getting bold from frequent handouts (including garbage and dog food bowls out in yards, beside garages,  or overflowing dumpsters in nearby businesses).   Or else some dogs gone stray (or feral) have run with that pair or single coyote, or pack,  and taught them, nothing to fear from people, they actually put out food.

       Like the normally shy mule deer.   In some national parks, they  will walk in front of your car, wait for you to stop, walk round to the open window and scavenge for juice, fruit, snack food on the car seat, drink from cups in the cupholders, then back up and let you go.  Like MassPort Tolls,  Everybody pay up.    Or, Yellowstone Bears.

      It is not normal coyote or fox behavior, and people are responsible.

       I used to hate renters by the 1-3 week, not year, when we lived on Lake Winnipesaukee.  They would have cookouts and clambakes, then nights sit with cameras in behind screens and windows, after strewing hamburgers, corn cobs, cooked but not eaten clams, lobster knuckles-  across the lawn.

       They liked watching and filming the fisher cats (huge) and mink  (both weasels) and raccoons, and bear, fox and coyote.

       Permanent residents or those renting anually lived with  the problems created when they were gone,  bears coming up on 2nd floor decks looking in the windows. 
       Walking 1/2 mile up the driveway with increasingly nervous dogs on leashes at 11 pm, and meeting 6-8 coyote strutting down the road, the week after labor day with only 4 occupied houses and 30 unoccupied cottages around.
     
        Hey, where did the food supply go?
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from sunshinemrs. Show sunshinemrs's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    I would definitely keep your cat in the house.  But I wouldn't be concerned about gardening - unless you are cornering the coyote or fox - they will pretty much just scurry off once they catch sight of you or avoid your yard altogether.
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from toytrumpet. Show toytrumpet's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    All this talk about bears reminds me - did any of you see the pic on the news yesterday of the black bear bending over the bird feeder and eating out of it?  I think it was here in MA, but not sure where.

    Tomarra, as to your question, for many reasons, it's best to keep your cat inside - not just the threat of predators, but disease, injury, accidental poisoning.  I have an 11 year old cat who has never been out (except a few times when she scooted out when someone came in), and she still begs to go out.  I have a slider in the back and whenever possible leave that open for her to crouch in hunting mode and watch the chipmunks, squirrels and birds (mourning doves have her salivating!).  It's her favorite spot in the house.  At first I was even leery of leaving that open because of a local fox who's daily path is through my backyard, right along the walk, but the cat I think smells the fox before it ever appears, because she turns, runs, and hides under the bed!  I know the fox are skiddish - I was going out to my car one afternoon and she and I almost met at the corner of the house.  She turned and ran the other way before I could even react.  This time of year we start hearing the coyotes howl, they gather in a local baseball field.  The sightings of them around here have been around 11:00 at night, and they are trotting right down the middle of the road.  Wild turkeys can be more of a threat to a small dog or cat.  My granddaughter has a miniature pincher and had to pick the dog up in her arms and run, because she was actually chased home here in town during the day, by one.  Bottom line, be kind to your cat (even tho she/he may not think so), by keeping it inside. 

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

        Cats that wander into brush and taller grass or ferns around open lawns are called Dinner for four.   Open lawns mid day, with a fence of people right there is cat's only hope. 

      Especially when denning with young, coyotes will take on much meatier easy to catch prey than the usual groundhog or smaller rodents.  Worst late March through May,  and just before winter snows in falls where local crops have not left plentiful grain for rodents.  (Seasonal info from NH Wildlife a few years when Derry, Atkinson area through Pawtuckaway Mtns to the East were overflowing coyotes to neighborhoods.)

        Coyote don't touch dogs 30 pounds and up unless starving and pack hunting.  Solo, they cannot take down and drag off something so close to their body size.
         You don't have a Suburban size back yard.  You have a rural one surrounded by some real woods.  They do not want you or your dog.  They take great interest in the rabbits, gophers, small weasels and squirrels your area, and that your garden attracts.

         Your lawn is more like an open meadow - cross occasionally but mostly travel around the edges unless something is in view, or they are watching the exit of a known burrow.   A  rabbit or groundhog - you have thousands per few square miles there- is most easily caught in an open space.  Dash in, dash out  with a rabbit in the mouth..

        Your greatest risk may not be coyotes, exactly.   I lived in E. Derry NH at a time when people were finding coyote road kill  more often, and as it happened around the time of an outbreak of rabies in some small animals, people were encouraged to bring in or report any found to designated places listed by a wildlife agency.

         They reported that near us, border of suburbia and rural areas, like in the Worcester to Quabbin  area,  and east of Albany, other  various places nationwide (Penn Ohio line, OK) there had been a recent increase in abandoned or feral dogs breeding with coyotes.
        Usually pretty uncommon, has to do the coyotes being anti people/ while dogs live near people,  and breeding times.  I don't know details- in rural areas they rarely cross.

        But the resulting hybrid population was causing an overall increase in the size of local coyotes  that had some crossbreeding in the wild - up to 15 or 20 pounds bigger.
      Not surprising, since a coyote will eat a small dog,  but mate with a larger one gone stray, like a shepherd or husky mix likely to survive outside for months.

       And these mixed animals  hang out more near people, like the domesticated dog, fear instinct is low, + get handouts and discover garbage.   I guess it pretty much takes a geneticist to tell you, you have a dead coyote that is actually 1/4 shepherd mutt mix.  That is why they wanted to check corpses for samples.  (Sounds awful.)

        So if your coyote is on the larger size and day bold, and does not flee at the sight of you,  it could be a mix, small amount dog.   It would actually possibly be interested in a friendly (not mating) way with a dog - I think male coyotes only make sperm a short time every year, not like dogs.   Or at least not scared off by the dog scent markers.  Gracie may have made more than one sniffing close acquaintance on a run.   She may have done the check each other out sniff with the coyote out of your sight beyond trees.

        Local 100% coyotes we see here are the usual 20 to 40 pounders, females smaller, the size of a field spaniel or a sheltie or australian sheepdog   MAX.   But those with even 1/16 dog and then interbreeding with hybrids-  there are pockets  like Ohio and Tenn where US Wildlife has upgraded the usual found size to 25 to 60pounds,  bigger more often traceably hybrids.

        A few years back on these boards, someone with an animal welfare bent was cautioning people about not letting their dogs run off leash nights in some Mass areas,  because of the coyotes larger in size  ? crosses  turning up.  When my cousin from Wyoming was staying with us- she was interested,  now and then missing ranch aussie shepherds would turn up with wild cross litters.  Why I remember.
        
        A 30 to 40 pound coyote is no threat to any adult, or child or dog in the 40-50 pound range.  He could make a mess of your trash,  and eat 3-5 of the rabbits and small gophers and groundhogs you do not want in your garden, every week, though.  More if feeding a family.

      Local black  bears are never a threat to the dogs, even puppies.   They will eat stray leftovers from weasel kill, otherwise kill nothing bigger than a fish.   The dogs chasing them off to the river and coming back with 20 pounds of muck in their coats provoke  the only threat to the dogs (that I will kill them!)  Housekeeping issue.

        Cat owners should worry, and no lhasa apso or little hotdog should run out of sight - fence them in.  But you and Gracie, no worries.
         Under a  "Uses for an old wedding dress" column I was chuckling over,  Kola Pennisula people were suggesting old wedding gowns could be useful to scare off larger brown bears ( smaller than our grizzlies, but dangerous.)  Bears have poor vision, so anything that makes you look huge in outline, terrifies them.  They showed brides in pouffy veils and huge skirts making huge bears turn tail and run.

      Not our little black bears, who will sit at your farm stand table and eat your quarts of strawberries and tomatoes when you are not looking! 
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from tomarra. Show tomarra's posts

    OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    We are renting a house in Salem,MA that is near the woods.  Last fall I we had foxes in our front & back yard.  Yesterday morning a  saw a coyote.  I love to go outside and garden but I starting to second guess that.  Plus my cat has been begging to go outside but I wont allow it.  I was wondering if you guys had any tips or advice on this.

    Thanks!
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    just wanted to add that where I grew up we had coyotes all over, and they had no qualms about going into people's unfenced yards to get cats or small dogs.
    3 neighborhood cats were taken by coyotes. One small poodle as well.
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

         Rodents are just coming out of burrows from hibernation and when the number of woodchucks, mice, and skunks around goes up, coyotes and fox have more, easier to catch food  to eat than cats.

        We have an old kiddie 4' pool, flexible sided with a 3 ft diameter hole cut in the bottom liner, that we move around the lawn when we want to let the guinea pigs have outdoor time, with kids or an adult right there.  Run around, eat grass, enjoy sunshine, get petted.
        We did it for years when I was little,  and people with Hutch rabbits do it too.   I will never forget when I was 8   and again 21 years later, last summer  a hawk  swooping down and making of with 1 7-9" guinea pig of the group.  I learned to watch for the shadow.  Never happens if you are standing within 5-6 feet.  But lay down under a tree 15 feet away -  NOT a good idea.

        We are not in the habit of thinking of pets as part of the food chain.
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from Peonie. Show Peonie's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    Well, I can tell you that my parent's cat was killed in their backyard 5 years ago around 10 p.m. at night, and my dad witnessed the whole thing. Thank Goodness my mother was asleep. He was watching TV in the den and heard a very loud screech so went to go look out the window, and saw a coyote run off with something in it's mouth, but he didn't put two and two together. The next morning, they found his remains about 100 feet away. All that was left was his head, and bones. The coyotes pretty much ate his entire insides. It is awful, and it is something you do not want to risk. Those coyotes are scavengers and are most of the time starving, and will strike very fast.  

    They got a new cat after and keep her inside.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    Waggie, I beg to differ (there's a first time for everything).  We not only have coyotes that come right into the backyard (within 30 ft despite not keeping Gracie's food out there) we also have a number of "missing" cats in the area, as per HomeAgain Petfinder emails I've been getting.  Chances are, the cats have not run away.  I've seen fox in the afternoon trotting through our yard.  However, I agree that dusk, dawn, and nighttime are when we've seen the coyotes.  I've never seen them during the day.

    My DH and live in the Quabbin area and have a HUGE garden.  He's in it every day all summer long.  No worries.  I'm worried our new bees (due to arrive in May) will attract bear, but that's a worry for another day and thread.
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

       They will avoid you.  I lived with coyote around in Sudbury, N. Andover near Harold Parker State Forest, and E. Derry, all suburbin,  not just up here in N NH.  They are shy, and though not entirely night creatures, mornings and evenings they will stay out of your yard if you are there.  They are rarely in occupied open land during the day 11 to 4pm.
       Cat's who wander far afield are a problem.  If your cat is in a fenced area,  alone, they will not scale it to get the cat.  Too much other food around this time of year and up to next Nov.

       If cats will stay in the yard when you are there, unfenced,  coyotes and fox will not come within 30 feet.
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from tomarra. Show tomarra's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    Thanks everyone,

    I have and will keep the cat inside even though he wants to go outside.  I have not seen any coyotes or foxes since I have posted. 
     
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    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    In Response to Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes):
    [QUOTE]but Wag, once the behavior starts there's nothing a concerned pet-owner can do but keep their pets indoors. I understand not every coyote will behave this way, but people really shouldn't take their chances, especially when a pet's life is at stake. It's better to err on the side of caution and keep your pets indoors if you have an unfenced yard and coyotes are around, and only bring them out on a leash or closely supervised. and in my area it wasn't so much people putting out food especially for the coyotes, it's that people have unlocked garbage cans outside and others have a dish of cat food out on the porch for their kitty. once cats started turning up eaten everyone kept their cats inside and locked up the garbage, but the coyotes still came looking, because they know they found food there once and so they just kept checking to see if there was anything else to be had. once they start, they won't stop. and even if a coyote couldn't kill your dog, it could still bite and spread disease. There was a sick raccoon in my neighborhood once, and while a raccoon would normally never dream of attacking a dog- animals do odd things when they're sick or injured. Someone's dog was bitten. It thankfully didn't get rabies but the bite was pretty nasty.
    Posted by pinkkittie27[/QUOTE]

      I agree - either provide a safe place for your pet, even a small area of stockage fence,  or be there with a leash walked pet, if small.

        People need to realize that their own actions (neighbors, and businesses) of leaving out pet food, trash, is the first attraction.
    And next, the coyotes and fox are there for the rodents they can catch.  
         Yorkies and cats are a bonus, not the original plan.

        Also, for rabies,  raccoons and various rodents are the problem - coyotes and fox do keep rodent populations down long term, they are not any more of a threat than a stray dog.  But people will rarely shoot an Old English sheepdog, and feel free to kill coyotes.  That squirrel at the feeder is in fact as likely to kill you with rabies as any coyote,  there are a heck of a lot more of them, and still  people have this rather irrational fear of coyotes being so much more dangerous.   Someone who lives 1 mile from Route 28 or Rt 1 as it streaks up MA should  be grateful  that there are coyotes eating 20 to 30 rats in a month, once healthy and capable of breeding,  or "nice" communities would be over run.

        I hate the new chip implantation  for what it has done to people's attitudes.  Folks who used to worry about losing their pet and carefully monitor, is my dog wandering, now seem to have this idea,  with a chip in, I will get it back, so let it run at night.   As long as no one finds my dog pooping on their lawn, I am fine.  
         But sheer numbers of pets make this most unwise except with well trained dogs in some limited rural areas.  Suburbia and wooded rural patches nearby cannot support so many pets on the loose.
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    but Wag, once the behavior starts there's nothing a concerned pet-owner can do but keep their pets indoors. I understand not every coyote will behave this way, but people really shouldn't take their chances, especially when a pet's life is at stake. It's better to err on the side of caution and keep your pets indoors if you have an unfenced yard and coyotes are around, and only bring them out on a leash or closely supervised.

    and in my area it wasn't so much people putting out food especially for the coyotes, it's that people have unlocked garbage cans outside and others have a dish of cat food out on the porch for their kitty. once cats started turning up eaten everyone kept their cats inside and locked up the garbage, but the coyotes still came looking, because they know they found food there once and so they just kept checking to see if there was anything else to be had.
    once they start, they won't stop.

    and even if a coyote couldn't kill your dog, it could still bite and spread disease. There was a sick raccoon in my neighborhood once, and while a raccoon would normally never dream of attacking a dog- animals do odd things when they're sick or injured. Someone's dog was bitten. It thankfully didn't get rabies but the bite was pretty nasty.
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    I should also add that vegetable gardens can attract coyotes. They either like the veggies, or are on the lookout for the rodents that like veggies.
    so be sure to fence your veggie garden.

     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from Peonie. Show Peonie's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    Just to add something, coyotes are everywhere. For instance, my cat was killed in my parents backyard, which is 6 miles west of Boston...

    And when I was living at home 5 years ago, I saw them ALL the time in our backyard late at night. They were starving and would literally scour the suburbs for anything they could find to eat.
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from toytrumpet. Show toytrumpet's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    Foxes are great jumpers.  A few summers ago during an early morning walk I saw one run across the road and leap over a fairly tall hedge.
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from tomarra. Show tomarra's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    I spotted a wild turkey last night so maybe that's why the coyote has been around.
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from DirtyWaterLover. Show DirtyWaterLover's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    There are coyotes and foxes in my neighborhood - I rarely see a cat wandering around.  I think foxes are less of an issue for anything other than a small dog or puppy.  Remember, jack russells and fox terriers (17-20 lbs) were used to hunt foxes.  But Coyotes are a different story.

    There's the legend of the female coyote in heat being used to lure male dogs into the woods where the pack of coyotes would be waiting.

    Also, if you have a small dog or young puppy, look out for hawks.

    By the way, I believe foxes can climb over a fence.  A coyote has a harder time.

     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    In Response to Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes):
    [QUOTE]I spotted a wild turkey last night so maybe that's why the coyote has been around.
    Posted by tomarra[/QUOTE]

    That, and the fact that wild turkeys are not solitary creatures.  Where you see one, unless they have been killed, you usually have 2 to 20 more before a group will move as much as a few hundred yards away to stake out territory.

       Fox knows, if he does not have an opportunity to capture  it now, following that turkey  to others and finding their night time roost means good hunting later.   They do doze, perched on low branches, under juniper.

        Fox do scrabble up the lower branches of trees like pine trees - kind of like watching small dogs without a lot of jumping spring get up stairs.   (Jumping spring - toy poodles have it, small bulldogs and dachshunds don't.)   Fox jump pretty high to start, too, but they can work their way up low pine branches, looking like turtles swimming.  A riot.
     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: OT-Protecting yourself and pet from coyote(for foxes)

    I agree, Wag. Thankfully I think killing coyotes is not permitted in MA unless it's a life or death situation, or if you're a certified animal control person.
    Even when we had the problems in my hometown we didn't want them killed, exactly for the reasons you specify. My hometown also had a huge groundhog problem, and the coyotes were the best way to keep their numbers down.

    For some reason almost no one leashed or fenced in their dogs in my hometown in the late 80s. A very small town with a Norman Rockwell type attitude that was really anachronistic. The town had to start sending out dog catchers to get people to understand that it just wasn't okay to do that anymore.
     

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