Letter to the editor: A word of caution to pet owners regarding coyotes

Editor:

There have been recent sightings of coyotes in Edmonds.

These are desperate times for them seeking a food source

My friend who lives in Edmonds was out in her fenced backyard with her husband and her three dearly loved dachshunds, when suddenly a coyote jumped over the fence and took one of the dogs and jumped back over the fence with the dog and disappeared into the greenbelt.

It all happened lightning fast before they could get to rescue their dog. They are devastated at the loss.

This weather seems to be driving desperate coyotes into our midst. When you are out with your pet, keep it on a leash and stay away from fence lines and near your house entrance.

If you have more than one dog, take them one at a time on a leash and watchfully be prepared to pick the dog up in an instant.

This tragic event that happened to my friend hopefully will not happen again to anyone.

Thank you,

Ingrid Wolsk
Edmonds

10 Replies to “Letter to the editor: A word of caution to pet owners regarding coyotes”

  1. Sightings are not “recent”. Coyotes have always been here. Their habitat is dissappearing, so of course we’re seeing more as they venture out to find food. Pet owners continue to let their pets out loose, especially cats. So coyote is surviving. Will pet owners ever fully realize their pet is relying on them to keep them alive?

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  2. To Ingrid Wolsk- I am heartbroken to hear you lost a dachshund to a coyote. When I lived in Edmonds on 88th Ave. West, I used to see a pack of 3 coyotes walking down 88th Ave late at night and they were searching for food sources. They got my cat, Beaudreux. I have 2 Dachshunds, Ricky and Lucy, and we have since moved to Stanwood and I have several coyotes that come around my property. I, like you,
    let my doggies run free around the yard and property. I seem to forget that in an instant, they could be gone. They are my “kids”. I can’t imagine what you are feeling. I am so sorry for your loss.
    I guess I need to be a bit more vigilant.
    Well, my condolences!

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  3. https://wdfw.wa.gov/living/coyotes.html#problems
    “In suburban areas of southern California, trapping and euthanizing coyotes has been shown not only to remove the individual problem animal, but also to modify the behavior of the local coyote population. When humans remove a few coyotes, the local population may regain its fear of humans in areas where large numbers of humans are found. It’s neither necessary nor possible to eliminate the entire population of coyotes in a given area. Contact your local wildlife office for additional information.”
    Our Local wildlife office is Region 4
    https://wdfw.wa.gov/about/regions/region4/

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  4. The list of pets taken by coyotes is Edmonds is very lengthy, especially in the last couple of years but don’t expect the city to do anything about coyotes soon, not even a catch and release. The city does not recognize that pets are family members or even expensive property in the case of purebreds. Perhaps if a human is bitten that will change things.

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  5. The coyotes in Edmonds have about 8 dens that they utilize (on a rotational basis.) I live not too far from Maplewood School, and am 50 yards from one of those dens. Even living that close, I had not seen a coyote in over a year until this week. They mostly feed on normal prey–mice and other rodents. However, they will take a small dog or cat if the opportunity presents itself. They are an important part of the Edmonds ecosystem. If YOU are the owner of a small dog or a cat, then you just need to be aware and take precautions. Keep your cat indoors, and be with your dog if it goes outside. This is not the responsibility of the City of Edmonds.

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    1. Hi Ken,

      I live in the same area. I see Coyotes a lot and have seen a pack of 4 on 200th where maplewood school is located. I see single coyotes so often with my small dog in both daylight, early evening and late night hours so I am each day on the lookout. I walk daily in various neighborhoods around edmonds. I am interested in knowing where the dens are located? And how you came upon the information on the 8 dens that they utilize? I love all wildlife and love the coyotes but I am conscious of my dogs vulnerability to lose his life due to their hunger so I purchased a spiked collar and coyote vest and keep him on a leash at all times. He is always accompanied even in high fenced areas. For those of you with small dogs, get a studded collar for all day use and protection of the neck, and a long spiked collars for walks, outdoor activity, and back yard romps. The Coyote Vest is also good investment to protect the body but even just a collar will protect the neck and that’s what the coyote goes for first.

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  6. There are plenty of critters such as carpenter ants, roof rats and termites that are “important “parts of the local ecosystems but I bet the average person doesn’t want them eating the house any more than pet owners want coyotes eating their pets. In similar spirit, Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife acknowledges that opportunists such as the coyote are a problem when in conflict with humans.

    The owner, the owner’s immediate family, employee, or a tenant of real property may kill or trap a coyote on that property if it is damaging crops or domestic animals (RCW 77.36.030). A license is not required in such cases. Check with your county and/or local jurisdiction for local restrictions. Except for bona fide public or private zoological parks, persons and entities are prohibited from importing a coyote into Washington State without a permit from the Department of Agriculture and written permission from the Department of Health. Persons and entities are also prohibited from acquiring, selling, bartering, exchanging, giving, purchasing, or trapping a coyote for a pet or export (WAC 246-100-191).

    Personally, I like the vest, It stops roosting pigeons too.

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