DENVER, Colo. – A 51 year old Denver resident reported that she was attacked by three coyotes while walking her dog near her home on Saturday evening.
The woman, who lives on the 3900 block of S. Oneida, stated that she was crossing the street with her dog, a 75-pound Labrador retriever, when she and her dog were surrounded by three coyotes. The woman reported that when two of the coyotes attacked her dog, she attempted to intervene. She said that when she attempted to defend her pet, she was scratched and bitten by one of the coyotes.
The woman brought her pet to a veterinary hospital and visited Swedish Hospital herself. She was released the same evening.
After being notified about the incident by Colorado State Patrol at 11:00 PM Saturday evening, Colorado Division of Wildlife officers began a search for the animals involved. Searches continued through Sunday evening, but were unsuccessful. DOW officers will continue to work the area to inform residents about the incident and will engage Denver authorities in the effort to address the situation. If the coyotes responsible for the incident can be located, the DOW will remove these animals by lethal means.
“The DOW takes injuries to humans very seriously,” said Liza Hunholz, Area Wildlife Manager for Denver. “We will continue to work with Denver and all other Front Range communities to ensure that all citizens are aware of the presence of coyotes and know how to protect themselves and their pets. Likewise, we will continue to support cities and towns in developing a management plan that meets the needs of their constituents, such as Greenwood Village and Lakewood have done. ”
Last week the DOW hosted city leaders and decision makers at a coyote symposium in Jefferson County to discuss the coyote issue and train representatives on biology, outreach methods, and laws and regulations pertaining to coyotes. Cities and towns across the Front Range were encouraged to work with the DOW to create coyote management plans that meet the needs of their constituents.
Most conflicts between people and coyotes occur when coyotes are able to find food near human residences. Sometimes coyotes find food left out for other wildlife. In other cases, these adaptable predators learn that they can hunt other wildlife and pets that frequent residential neighborhoods. But the result is that when coyotes lose their natural wariness of the human environment, they can become aggressive towards people The DOW strongly discourages feeding of wild animals, including coyotes. In fact, feeding of coyotes and foxes is illegal in urban areas.
If a coyote approaches you:
-Be as Big, Mean, and Loud as possible
-Wave your arms and throw objects at the coyote
Shout in a deep, loud and authoritative voice
-DO NOT RUN or turn your back on the coyote
-Face the coyote and back away slowly
-If attacked, fight back with your fists and feet
The DOW encourages members of the public who encounter an aggressive coyote to immediately call 303-291-7227. If the incident occurs after business hours, contact the Colorado State Patrol (303-239-4501) who will contact a wildlife officer.
To learn more about living with coyotes, visit the DOW web page, at: