…is a dead coyote.
How the hell many times to people have to be told this before it registers?
This morning the corgis and I were making the dawn stroll across Orchid between 15th and 11th. A coyote lives in the alley over there — I’ve seen her several times before. But this morning I didn’t spot her until she came trotting up the sidewalk on the other side of the street and was just a few hundred feet away.
She saw us.
We saw her.
My dogs, not being the brightest rhinestones on the cowboy vest, figured she was just another dog — how interesting! She, on the other hand, clearly thought, “Ah! Breakfast!” 😀
She kept trotting along, not changing her pace and very clearly not afraid of me. I carry a few stones in my pocket for the purpose of beaning coyotes and aggressive dogs, should it be necessary, but at this point I was too busy wrangling corgis to dig them out.
She now crossed the street, coming straight at us. “Yum! Can I get ketchup with that, please?”
I hollered GIT!
She was unfazed.
Another attempt at GIT! showed that she was unafraid of me and not impressed by a sharp, somewhat aggressive utterance.
At this point I manage to get the dogs behind me and then yell, in full counter-surfing voice, “NO! BAAAD DOG!!!!”
Incredibly, this stopped her! Now she crosses back over to her side of the street and continues trotting westbound. Dogs and human continue east. As distance increases between both parties, she crosses back over to our side and disappears into a yard that has a lot of shrubbery.
She appeared to know exactly where she was going. Probably someone leaves food out for their pets in that area. Or for stray animals — the yard she entered is overgrown with shrubbery (lots of cover), and the owners are, shall we say, eccentric.
Please don’t leave food out for stray cats (including your own cats that you allow to run loose). Or for stray coyotes. Leaving out cat food or dog food helps to acclimate coyotes to humans, and it calls them in to our neighborhoods. Once a coyote is no longer afraid of humans, it becomes a potential hazard to your small pets — cats and smaller dogs.
In our parts, there’s plenty of natural food for coyotes. It’s called “roof rats.” In your parts, the chow line may include gophers, sewer rats, mice, raccoons, badgers, and the like.
Coyotes predate on vermin, and that is why they are not a bad critter to have in the neighborhood. Unless you enjoy the sound of a line of rats doing the can-can across your rafters, leave the coyotes alone.
That means a) not feeding them and b) keeping your (scrumptious!) cats and your dogs indoors or on a leash at all times. If we feed the wildlife on purpose, they lose their fear of us and then become a nuisance. And speaking of nuisances, letting your cat roam loose is feeding the coyotes.
Do not feed the coyotes. Dammit!