Missouri Dept. of Conservation tells people to protect pets during coyote breeding season

Updated: Feb. 20, 2022 at 8:08 PM CST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - It’s important to keep an eye out for coyotes around southwest Missouri during this time of year.

Francis Skalicky with the Missouri Department of Conservation said the February and March is peak breeding season for coyotes. During this time, Skalicky said they have been known to attack your animals and pets.

“[They] prey on livestock young, like calves and lambs and things like that,” said Skalicky. “In an urban setting, they can prey on pets. You got to remember those pets, cats and small dogs.”

Pet owners, like Jason Hartman, said coyotes aren’t something they have really thought about before.

“I’ll definitely look to make make a point to keep them closer [and] on a leash,” said Hartman.

Skalicky said to keep animals leashed, put up a fence, and make sure you watch them once the sun goes down.

“At night, it’s just a little bit easier for that coyote to sneak up on your pet if it’s outside,” said Skalicky.

Hartman and another dog owner, Bart Cardetti, said they encourage others to take the necessary safety precautions.

“You got to keep an eye on your surroundings,” said Hartman. “It’s always something you should do anyways, but you just got to keep an eye on your surroundings.”

“Whenever they go out at night, it’s going to be in a backyard that fenced in, so they remain pretty safe,” said Cardetti.

Hartman, who has had multiple dogs over the years, said their safety is always at the top of the list.

“Their safety is another paramount concern,” said Hartman. “Just have to make sure that you don’t put yourself in a bad situation.”

Skalicky said coyote attacks can be rare, but they still do happen. If you see one, loud noises should scare them off.

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