Around 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, police said a 5-year-old boy was playing in a backyard sandbox in Arlington when a coyote approached him. As the child turned to run away, the coyote lunged and attacked him, biting him in the leg.
Residents in the city of 42,000 were not that surprised since coyotes sightings have been becoming increasingly more common there and even when they don’t see them, they certainly hear them – something that can be unsettling for those who own pets or have small children. It’s not uncommon for a single coyote to howl “at the moon” only to be answered by a half dozen or more coyotes in its pack.
“If you feed your pets inside, clean the area under bird feeders, put a tight lid on trash cans and lock up dumpsters you can avoid a lot of these potential encounters with coyotes,” said Arlington Police Lt. Bryan Gallagher. In addition, he suggested the more time you spend in your yard the more of a deterrent your property will be. Coyotes generally do not like sudden or loud noises and are shy around larger animals.
Having your dogs outside often, clearing your yard of any food items before going inside, keeping your trash tightly covered, and even removing the fallen seed from your bird feeder will go a long way to making sure coyotes skip your property.
Experts suggest that if you do encounter a coyote, to not only be noisy and make large, exaggerated motions but make eye contact.
This recent attack is the third attack total with the first one being on an adult female on a Provincetown beach, and the second attack on a child in one week. The attack on a child earlier in the week, was also on a beach.