Startled Dog Owners Report Coyote Predation
As every spring, coyote encounters with humans and dogs have been keeping Corrales Animal Control busy. Many readers followed the Albuquerque Journal’s coverage of Jill, the miniature Schnauzer who went missing in north Corrales and was sought by a tracking dog brought in from Southern California. The dog’s remains were found near her home, a victim of suspected coyote attack.
A Jack Russell/Chihuahua mix was found by Corrales Animal Control severely injured with puncture wounds to the neck, another probable coyote attack. She is being treated, but no one has claimed the dog.
Coyotes are especially assertive in springtime, protecting their young and territory from perceived threats (see Bosque Notes). A resident on the south end of Corrales was watering her yard when she noticed that her dog had vanished. A neighbor saw a coyote run off with the dog. The resulting vet bill ran to $1,000.
An even more alarming case happened on Windsong Lane one morning while residents were in their yard. A coyote jumped the fence and grabbed their 40-pound dog. The dog was rescued and taken to the vet.
Corrales Animal Control officer “Frosty” Frostenson notes that cat owners especially need to keep watch at this time of year. Cats tend to back up and fight when cornered, rather than run away, making them easy prey. And it’s not just coyotes that prey on small animals; large hawks and owls in the area could easily fly off with a 10-pound pet.
Residents reported a coyote frequenting the same area in north Corrales where pups had been seized over the past two years, across from the fire station on Paseo Tomas Montoya. Corrales Animal Control found a den in the area and three pups, and left human scent and disturbance in an effort to drive the animals off. The coyote apparently has moved her den further north, to an area with less human traffic. Pups had been seized in previous years after reports of aggression by the mother.
Dog theft was suspected last month after a string of unusual coincidences. Two dogs running loose on Loma Larga were picked up and recognized as the same two dogs that had gotten loose a short time before. The dogs were scanned for microchips, and the Jack Russell/bulldog was traced to an owner who claimed his dog had been stolen out of a Corrales yard two months earlier. No charges were brought, but the dog was returned to his registered owner. The other dog, a pitbull, was returned to the roommate of the man suspected of theft.