An increase in coyote sightings has happened recently along the Front Range...and you should be careful.  Colorado Parks and Wildlife wants to remind people to take precautions with their pets who live in coyote country. Coyotes are in the middle of their breeding season. They are establishing and protecting their territories and may see any dog as competition for food. Smaller dogs and cats may be seen as prey. You can take steps to protect your pets at all times.

Discouraging Coyotes Near Your Home

  • Frighten coyotes with loud noises.
  • Remove all food from yards such as pet food, table scraps on compost piles, fallen fruit and bird feed.
  • Trim or remove vegetation and brush that provides cover for prey (such as mice and rabbits) and hiding cover for coyotes; trim lower limbs of shrubs and conifer trees.
  • Cover up or fill in any potential dens or tunnels under fences, porches, sheds or balconies
  • Keep all trash out of reach of coyotes; place trash out only on the morning of pickup.

Protecting Pets

  • Keep pets in fenced areas or kennels to minimize encounters; many coyotes can scale a six-foot fence.
  • Stay with your pets when they are in the yard, especially at night.
  • Keep cats indoors.
  • Pet kennels and runs should have a fully-enclosed roof.
  • Keep pets on a leash when walking them in open space areas.
  • Do not allow pets to run loose in areas where there is coyote activity.
  • Keep pets vaccinated.

Protecting Yourself and Your Family

  • Although rare, coyotes have been known to injure people. Most of these incidents involved people feeding them. Teach your family about urban wildlife and never feed wildlife.
  • Coyotes are usually wary of humans and will avoid people whenever possible. If a coyote does approach you, make loud noises, yell, throw objects or make yourself look big.
  • Never feed or attempt to “tame” a coyote.
  • Teach your children to be SMART if they have an encounter with a coyote or other predator:
    • Stop, do not run or turn your back to it.
    • Make yourself look bigger by lifting your arms or pulling your jacket over your head.
    • Announce your presence loudly and firmly such as “LEAVE ME ALONE!
    • Retreat by backing away slowly.
    • Tell an adult of your encounter.

 Report Aggressive Coyote Behavior

Any aggressive coyote behavior toward people should be reported to local law enforcement or to the CPW office at 303-291-7227.

If you would like more information on state laws regarding nuisance wildlife, please go to the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website and click on: "Nuisance Wildlife Laws".

Victor Schendel, Colorado Parks and Wildlife

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