Coyote kills small dog, disrupts child’s birthday party
Authorities says it's believed the coyote is the same one that was caught on camera following a man and his dog at Holme's Lake last month.
Authorities say a coyote killed a small dog and disrupted a child’s birthday party before being chased away by adults in southeast Lincoln on Sunday.
A six-year-old child was out with their dog when the coyote came up and attacked the dog, shook it violently and ended up killing it, Animal Control Officer Scott Lowery said.
“We think probably the same coyote ended up crashing the kid’s birthday party, running around, getting very close to children,” Lowery said.
The animal may have gotten to within a five-foot distance of the children who were playing in an area south of 64th and Pine Lake Road.
Lowery says it’s believed the coyote is the same one that was caught on camera following a man and his dog at Holme’s Lake last month. Following that incident, Animal Control teamed up with other agencies to make a game plan to find the animal, including setting up traps and adding additional patrols.
Lowery said the animal may have shifted its territory to this new area where it confronted the children. He said coyotes are typically not aggressive with people, but can be with small animals like domestic dogs and cats – which they view as competition for food.
“In this particular case we have a coyote that’s not necessarily being actively aggressive, but he’s getting close to people which is a concern for us,” he said. “Once they start getting close to people and showing no fear at all, that’s when we like to start intervening.”
Relocating coyotes can be a challenge, and Lowery said even if the animal was relocated it would likely make its way back to it’s original territory. If caught, he says the animal will likely be humanely euthanized.
“This is a situation we can’t allow to continue,” he said. “We need to step in and take action, which is what we’re doing at this point.”
Urban coyotes have been seen in Lincoln since the 1990s, Lowery said. He recalls seeing them as a new officer.
Animal Control has received a few reports this summer of coyotes attacking animals, none of which were confirmed by eyewitnesses. For the most part, Lowery says, they’ve been “good animal citizens.”
Lowery says people should always stay aware of their surroundings. While they can be a threat to small pets, he says humans are rarely attacked.
“The message to people is you don’t need to fear coyotes.”