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Inland Empire coyote attacks on the rise

July 21, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Recently, few people, and even fewer pets, can be spotted outside in one Colton neighborhood. Residents say the neighborhood is under siege. At least five pets have been killed by coyotes in just over a month. One of those pets belonged to Gloria Morris.

"She was my dog for five years. And I let her out for 15 minutes at 9:15. When I went to get her at 9:30, she was gone," said Gloria.

Around the corner, Bob Wade also lost his 13-year-old Yorkie.

"Well, I mean, part of the family ... I mean, it's sad that you have such a loving neighborhood here and then you lose a dog to a damn coyote ... and no one is going to do anything about it," said Bob.

Coyote attacks throughout the Inland Empire are not uncommon. But in one neighborhood, most people are scared to let pets out of their eyesight. Some are even concerned for their own safety.

"I, personally, would like to get up and go for a walk, but I can't. I'm too afraid to now," said Colton resident Linda Parker.

"My wife and my granddaughter are sitting there pulling weeds and he was right here in the yard glaring them down," said Bob.

"Coyotes will view small children as prey, not unlike small domestic pets ... cats, dogs, individuals. If you're aware that there is a coyote concern in your area, you should make sure that you do not leave children out unattended," said Brian Cronin, San Bernardino County Animal Control.

Animal Control recommends that residents should not leave food or water outside, and that they deposit trash in tightly closed containers. In Colton, residents have called Animal Control. However, some of them still feel powerless.

"If I fire a gun or something, I'm going to go to jail because I fired a gun in the residence, you know? So ... yeah, I'm at the end of my rope," said Bob.

To file a coyote complaint, a resident must contact the local police department. Animal Control also says a resident should not fire a gun, as that person could be charged with illegal discharge of a firearm.

 

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