Coyotes targeting small pets in Willowdale
Sheriff urges residents to keep eye on pets
So far, two cats have been killed and another is missing. On the East Bank, coyotes have been a problem as well with 10 being trapped in St. Rose.
Last year, 10 cats and dogs were reported missing in St. Rose. All were believed to have been killed by coyotes. Sheriff Greg Champagne said that his office has trapped around 10 coyotes in the St. Rose area in past months.
In May of this year, two small dogs were taken from their yards in Willowdale. The two yorkies were let out by their owners, and in minutes, disappeared. Now, two cats have been found dead and another is missing.
“Deputies in the marine division are locating areas in the Willowdale area to attempt to trap coyotes,” Champagne said. “The common factor here is that the cats that have been killed or disappeared have been allowed out until late in the evening.
“Coyotes have been confirmed in the area and are very smart and elusive.”
Animal Control Director Angie Robert said that she gets reports of coyotes all across the parish, especially in areas where new construction is taking up some of the coyotes’ habitat and food sources.
“So they have to find alternative food sources,” Robert said.
Robert said that residents need to cut down on the reasons that bring coyotes into neighborhoods.
“Never leave your pet outside at night, because when you do it becomes part of the food chain and your almost inviting the coyotes to come in,” she said. “Also, never leave food outside at night and keep your trash in a closed trash bin.”
While coyotes are usually afraid of humans, some seem to be losing that fear, Robert said.
“They are becoming more urbanized all the time and have learned to prowl neighborhoods after dark looking for small cats or dogs,” he said. “We would urge caution with your family pets after dark.”
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