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Coyote kills family’s dog in Arlington

A wild coyote attacked and killed a family’s dog in Arlington Friday morning, leading police and animal control officials to provide tips on preventing coyote attacks.

A West Highland terrier was playing in its family’s backyard Friday at around 7 a.m. when the coyote attack occurred.

“There will always be coyotes in Arlington,” Arlington Animal Control Officer Kathryn Kozikowski said in a statement. “The best ways that we can prevent further interactions with coyotes is to make our homes less of an attraction for them.”

Due to last year’s mild winter, there is an influx of wildlife in the area, which increases the amount of food for coyotes, Kozikowski said.

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Officials said people should not approach any wild animals if they encounter them. Additionally, families should be vigilant when pets or children play outside.

Secured garbage and clean bird feeders will make animals less likely to approach a house, police said.

“This was an extremely unfortunate incident where a family lost their beloved pet,” Police Chief Frederick Ryan said in the statement. “While residents should not live in fear of coyotes, we do advise that those with small children and animals be vigilant while outdoors, and follow these safety tips to help prevent interactions with the animal.”

Anyone who spots a coyote is asked to call Arlington Animal Control.

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