Recent studies have consistently shown that pets make up less than 2% of an urban coyote’s diet. Though the risk of coyotes to pets is small, you should still take measures to keep your cat or dog safe.
Keep cats indoors – Cats that roam free outdoors live shorter lives than indoor cats. The more time your cat spends outdoors, the greater the risks it faces, not only from coyotes, but also from raccoons, cars, anti-freeze ingestion, domestic dogs, leukemia, parasites, feline AIDS, and more.
For more information on how to best care for your cat, and help them lead a happy life indoors, please visit the SPCA.
Dogs are typically at lower risk than cats from coyote predation. However, coyotes have been known to prey on small dogs weighing less than 5 kg (10 lbs), and occasionally have lured, attacked, or stalked medium to larger dogs.
- Carry a coyote shaker (a pop can filled with 10 pennies or pebbles)
- Keep your dog on leash and within sight at all times
- Walk your dog in daylight in open areas with higher pedestrian activity such as busy streets and main park trails. Avoid ravines and densely vegetated areas (eg. thick hedges or blackberry)
- Walk your dog with a friend or two. This way one person can control the dog(s) safely while the other scares the coyote away
- Feed your pets indoors. Do not leave pet food outside where it can attract and habituate wild animals including coyotes
If you see a coyote while walking your small dog:
- Pick up your dog
- Yell “Go Away Coyote”. This alerts others nearby that there is a coyote and gives it a scare
For information on off leash dog park locations, by-law regulations, responsible dog ownership and dog licensing, please visit Vancouver Animal Control or your local municipality’s website.