A number of dogs have been attacked by coyotes in the Cedar Valley area recently, with one needing to be put down due to the extent of the wounds.
The Gardner’s family dog, a pomeranian named Teako, escaped from the house March 27, then bolted through their next door neighbour’s unfenced yard and into the greenbelt behind their properties.
After searching the area, they found Teako bloodied, bruised, but still alive. Coyotes had preyed upon the animal, said Karen Gardner.
They rushed the golden-haired animal to Mission Veterinary Clinic, but his injuries were so severe and would have drastically reduced his quality of life. The family made the difficult decision to put him down.
“We had him almost five years. We had gotten him from a rescue,” she said.
In a letter written to The Record, Gardner warns other residents about the potential danger.
“If you live anywhere near this forested area: Nottman, Jennings, Cade Barr, Dalke, please guard your pets carefully. I would hate to have any pet owner suffer the way my family and I are now…”
Gardner had high praise for the staff at the clinic.
“As soon as we walked in they went into amazing action.”
Veterinarian Dr. Susan Calverly said any dog less than 20 pounds is a potential coyote target, and that her office has treated four dogs, including Teako, in the past month.
She said in one instance, a dog was attacked while it and the owner were out for a walk. The owner had to beat the coyotes back.
“At this time of year, coyotes have pups in the den,” Calverly added.
BC Conservation Officer Paul McFadden said they’re aware of the problem, and agreed with Calverly that puppy season makes the animals more aggressive.
“Coyotes will aggressively protect their pups. They’re as protective as a female black bear,” he said.