Animal control officials in Temecula have issued a warning advising residents to be cautious of aggressive and “brave” coyotes.
Officials recommend “hazing,” a technique involving making loud noises, flailing one’s arms and throwing things, to frighten the coyotes away.
This tactic proved life-saving for one pet owner, who successfully scared away a coyote from her property Friday. The animal had her 16-month-old dog, Lola, in its jaws.
“Apparently, I did the right thing,” Gabriele Baber said, Lola’s owner. “I ran like a wild woman, screaming with my arms going and at that time, he let go in his interest of Lola and Lola ran into the house.”
Lola suffered several puncture wounds and a broken rib, but is fine, Baber said.
Monique Middleton, a humane officer at Animal Friends of the Valleys, a shelter that offers animal control services to the Temecula area, attributed the coyotes’ behavior to having trouble finding food during the hot summer months.
“The reason we gave out a warning was because coyotes were showing up on people’s properties,” Middleton said. “It has a lot to do with the heat. A lot of dogs, cats and bunnies are missing because the coyotes view them as sources of food.”
Middleton explained the importance of instilling in coyotes their natural fear of humans.
“Coyotes are becoming braver and smarter,” Middleton said. “If we do not create a fear barrier, their attacks will continue. It is recommended to either throw things at them or, if possible, bang pots and pans together as they dislike clanging metal noises.”
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