CLEARFIELD COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) – Chihuahua-mix Squirt can’t seem to catch a break over at the Shick’s house in DuBois. For the second time in less than a year, she’s been viciously attacked by a coyote.
According to owner Jenny Shick, it happened around 11 p.m. when she let Squirt and their other dog Journey outside one last time before bed. While waiting for them to use the bathroom, Jenny heard a cry from Squirt.
“And I thought it can’t, it can’t be happening again,” said Jenny.
Jenny says she called out for the dogs in the darkness, but instead of two animals coming towards her, she saw three.
“Squirt came running, and then Journey came to my left and the coyote came slowly up to my right and it wasn’t afraid of me. And it was nearly as big as Journey,” said Jenny.
To make it afraid she yelled at the coyote telling it to go away.
“And then it ran away,” said Jenny.
Jenny wouldn’t see the damage done until everyone got back inside the house safely.
“Blood was dripping down all on the floor so I wrapped her up and off we went to State College again…really fast,” said Jenny.
Squirt suffered from 4 puncture wounds, but thankfully this time around, she wouldn’t need any surgery.
The Shick’s say they’re lucky yet again, but know that luck will only go so far; which is why they want to alert their community to be aware.
“It’s pretty stressful when that happens ya know especially to people who really like animals,” said owner Joe Shick.
To help keep any more coyotes away, Joe says they’ve added a trap, flood lights on the deck, are now leashing the dogs, as well as making sure to have some sort of noise playing.
“They say if you have a radio playing that sometimes scares a way so I have a radio up on the deck and we turn it on when we go out plus the spotlights so we’re taking some precautions,” listed Joe.
According to wildlifehelp.org, other ways to protect your pets from coyotes are to:
- Keep cats indoors and dogs leashed and supervised whenever outside, especially at night
- A coyote-proof kennel or fence (6-foot high fencing with the bottom extending two feet underground, to prevent digging) provides the best protection for pets
- Keep dogs leashed and stay in open, well-lit areas
- Light your yard when pets are outside.
- Store pet food indoors or at least in a coyote-proof container
- Avoid areas frequented by coyotes or that are known den sites
- If followed or approached by a coyote, get your pet safely inside but do not run or turn your back. If you can’t go inside, act aggressively by shouting, waving your arms, or throwing objects to reinforce the threat. Carrying an air-horn or pepper spray may be considered for those seeking further protection.
- Screen off openings under sheds and decks using sturdy galvanized wire or hardware cloth attached to the lower edge then buried underground, slanting outward 1 to 2 feet
- Supervise small pets when outside and walk dogs on a leash. Cats should be kept indoors and not allowed to roam free. In rare instances, larger dogs can be viewed as a threat particularly from January to June during mating and pup rearing seasons.
As for Squirt, the Shick’s say she’s doing well, and getting right back to her feisty self.
“She’s like a dog with 9 lives,” laughed Joe.
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