So, last week I wrote about a problem in our central Phoenix neighborhood distressing to us dog people: coyotes.
I had one lounging on my front yard and others have seen them sauntering through the ‘hood. These coyotes are not particularly scared of us and the Arizona Game and Fish Department advice of walking tough and acting big and frightening isn’t working.
Worried about my dog, the neighbor’s small dogs and kids playing at Encanto Park, where apparently a den of them live, I called my City Councilperson Laura Pastor.
The City Council’s advice about coyotes
I talked with a very nice guy there who said he would do some research and get back to me. After a lot of missed calls, we connected. Got to give him an “A” for effort.
First he suggested talking with neighbors who feed stray cats because the cat food and the cats themselves attract coyotes.
But we both realized that the kind-hearted people who do that may not want to stop feeding the cats and there is nothing that can be done about that.
Then, he suggested making sure all the garbage can lids were secure and not easy to open to deprive them of an easy source of food. Fair enough. I can do a quick survey of the alleys and report back to the city.
Lastly, he suggested super soakers. Apparently coyotes hate water as much as cats do. And a blast from a super soaker will annoy them enough to make them run off.
I can get a super soaker and place it by the front door and blast at any coyotes from the safety of my screened front door. But I am not walking through my neighborhood streets, armed with a super soaker. Hell no. It gets dark early this time of year and the last thing my neighbors need to see is me walking through the streets with a suspicious weapon-looking like thing.
So, there’s the advice. Take it for what it is worth. The city is not calling out the coyote SWAT team.
What I am going to do
I’m sticking with the golf-club/cane as a deterrent; also I’m trying to walk with neighbors at the same time. And I’m talking with any neighbor I can find to tell them about the situation and get them to think about what they can do to stop this.
At times, I feel like I’m “chicken little” about coyotes — “the sky is falling and it’s raining coyotes” but there have been cases of dogs being attacked and there are a lot curious kids at Encanto Park who may confuse coyotes for a different type of dog. it just seems like more could be done.