Coyote sightings on the rise in Little Rock

    8:37 PM, Feb 26, 2013   |    comments
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    Photo Gallery: GRAPHIC CONTENT: Coyote sightings on the rise in Little Rock

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) --This past weekend, a coyote attacked two dogs in Little Rock's Leawood neighborhood.

    Coyotes have been roaming the outskirts of Little Rock for many years, but lately, Leawood and West Little Rock have had more than their fair share of sightings, according to Tracy Roark, manager of Little Rock Animal Services.

    "Every year we see this increase in Leawood and some out in West Little Rock. St. Charles area, so it's just one of those things we fight every year," he said, and the sightings peak during the spring and fall.

    On Sunday, a coyote attacked Shelley Seitz's two dogs in the Leawood neighborhood after she says she let them out that morning.

    "They had been out a few minutes and then I heard fighting. I thought it was a neighborhood dog had gotten into the yard," she recalled. "When I went out, they had it cornered."

    Seitz said that's when she yelled for her two dogs, Winnie and Piglet to get back in the house. Once she got the dogs safely inside, Seitz noticed injuries on her smaller dog, Piglet.

    "She had several bite wounds on her head. She has bite wounds inside her mouth, so evidently they were grappling, like had each other by the mouth," she added.

    Piglet ended up with 10 stitches while Seitz's larger dog, Winnie came away with a puncture wound to the head.

    For the next 24 hours Seitz said she wondered what happened to the coyote, but discovered it hiding under the shed in her backyard Monday, And Animal Services came out to capture it.

    Seitz said she hopes her ordeal is an isolated incident.

    "I don't know what would have happened had it just been one of them, and if it would have been a smaller dog, it wouldn't have stood a chance," she said.

    Animal Services is now trying to avoid another attack and Roark has this message for pet owners:

    "What I suggest is everybody--especially small dogs and cats--keep them up, and keep up a food source. If you're feeding your cat or your dog outside, bring them in," he said.
    Animal control euthanized the coyote and is testing it for rabies.

    Roark said coyotes are not typically rabid, but his department wants to play it safe.

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