Living with a large coyote or coywolf in the neighborhood

Posted By on October 30, 2009


My apology for the lousy Palm Pre ‘enlarged’ photo of a large coyote who has been roaming our Liberty Township Ohio neighborhood.  It has been a source of concern for neighbors and pet owners  that we’ve had a few more coyotes than normal … and that this particular large male has decided to make his daily trek through our neighborhood. When I was on vacation I received a call from my neighbor concerned for our dog as she spotted a “coyote as big as a German Shepard” in her backyard. I thanked her for the concern and rolled my eyes as to the size … assuming she was exaggerating (sorry Pam) … knowing my Australian Blue Heeler had proudly brought me a frail dead coyote in the past, as she does with other animals – raccoons, rabbits, birds, squirrel and even minks. Today, to my amazement, a beautiful auburn colored LARGE coyote (or possibly coywolf as the larger ones have been called) ran past me in the front yard while I was raking up leaves. At first I couldn’t believe the size as we starred at each other as we were only 50 feet apart. I struggled for my phone to try and take a photo (above), but he was having little to do with it. Nevertheless, our dog Tootsie is not spending the night outside tonight.

I did a little Googling tonight in hopes to pinpoint a bit more information … and came up with a photo that was somewhat similar to what I saw today.

Eastern CoyWolf

EDIT 11/6/2009: Adding an excellent Urban Coyote PDF information sheet (rt click save as) and a photo just to remind those of us with ‘relatively’ bold and hardy dogs that a coyote bite is nothing to mess with …

Coyote Teeth


  • JimBeam

    I’ve lived with coyotes for years and they haven’t bothered my dogs. I don’t think there is a concern unless you have a small pooch or an agressive dog who will chase after a male coyote.

    As for living with them in a neighborhood situation, I would keep your garbage covered and noise making gear handy. A couple pans banging together every time you see them in your yard will encourage them to change their hunting path. (a scoped Ruger Mini will do the same, but isn’t an appropriate option for a “neighborhood” )

  • buck

    With the death of that woman in Canada, it not a bad idea to watch out for these guys.. buck

  • Update posted on West Chester Ohio community website:

    Coyote — What do I need to know?
    Coyote are not native to Ohio, but are now prevalent throughout the region due to the disappearance of their primary predator.

    The average coyote is 30 to 40 pounds, has pointed upright ears and a pointed snout. His tail is typically down and he walks in a loping fashion. October and April are the coyotes most active months due to their mating cycles. Coyotes are omnivores meaning they eat what is available to them. The typical coyote food source is small mammals such as rabbit, voles, shrews and mice. They are typically night-time hunters, but in a secure environment they will hunt during daylight. Coyotes prefer areas with plenty of cover from trees and shrubs. They build dens when their young are born and then will stick close to their dens as they bring food back for pups. Once pups are on their own, coyotes move about without a set “home.” They remain in areas where there is a ready food source. They are highly adaptable which has promoted their survivability in developed suburban and even urban areas.

    Over the years, some coyote have adopted new “learned behaviors” which make them more brazen and visible in urban settings. These coyotes will approach occupied properties offering possible food sources such as unsecured trash, food left outdoors for pets or wildlife, and even small household pets or pets that pose no threat to the coyote. Learn more about the urban coyote.

    In recent times, West Chester residents have experienced increasing conflicts with urban coyotes. There have been multiple reports of household pets killed by these coyotes. While there are many coyotes in the region, wildlife experts maintain that it is most likely just a few coyotes who have adopted these “learned behaviors.” Some coyotes roam freely during daylight hours and approach homes where there is a potential food source.

    It is strongly recommended that if you have seen or heard coyotes in your area that you monitor your pets and children carefully. Educate your children about coyotes and instruct them to never approach any wild animal, even if it appears sick or injured. Homeowners whose property is adjacent to wooded areas should monitor the tree lines and monitor household pets carefully when outdoors, especially in the early morning and evening hours. Smaller dogs and cats are most likely to be attacked. Making loud noises and even throwing things at the animal from a distance will discourage its approach in most cases.

    The Ohio Department of Natural Resources indicates that a concerted effort of residents and property owners will be required to eliminate these coyotes from neighborhoods. The wildlife experts indicate that education is key to understanding these animals. Just a few residents choosing to provide food outdoors for squirrels or other small mammals provides the coyote with a readily available food source and attracts them to residential properties.

    The Ohio Department also endorses trapping as one of the most effective means of eliminating nuisance coyotes. Wildlife experts caution property owners that expertise is required to trap a coyote effectively and to avoid injury to neighborhood children and pets. They encourage property owners to hire quailfied, licensed trappers. Experienced trappers can be found through the internet and phone directory, or through The Ohio Department of Natural Resources at (937) 372-5639, ext. 5207. It is important to remember that coyotes will not be completely eliminated from the area through trapping or any other means.

    West Chester Township does allow trapping on private property and encourages residents to work together. The Ohio Administrative Code with regard to hunting and trapping regulations, as well as nuisance wild animal regulations, will also provide helpful information.

    Coyote can be hunted anytime on your own private property with the appropriate licenses and permits. The West Chester Police Department, however, enforces Ohio Revised Code 2923.162 with regard to discharging of a firearm and does not condone the use of a firearm in a residential community.

  • Wolves, coyotes and even deer were almost completely eradicated from Ohio and other similar states when there were few hunting rules and relatively open attitudes about hunting. We had a 47′ Chevy pickup with a factory installed spot-light installed right on the driver side door, and it wasn’t meant to be used for lighting up sidewalks for tricker treaters.

    Many land owners these days are paranoid about the thought of someone harming one of those cute, innocent furry little creatures on their land you savage beast, the animals belong there, you stay out you murderer. I am old now, but many decades ago, you knew a lot of folks in your area, and simply went hunting, period, if you saw the land owner, they waved hello and kept going or even stopped to chat with you.

    As long as it’s good for state coffers to have high deer populations that attract hunter revenue, as long as there are suburban neighborhoods that swallow up huge tracts of land where everyone wants to live near the city but in a setting that’s as close to “country” as possible (where you must always drive a car to get where you’re going ALWAYS, nothing is in walking distance, neither can you discharge a firearm), and as long as over half the land in some states, even rural properties, are locked up by owners who shudder at the thought of those poor little furry creatures being harmed by those nasty humans, unlike the last time around, you’d better get used to dealing with a high population of coyotes. And with the next thing that’s coming, interbred coydogs that are even larger, because you won’t be able to make that much of a dent in their population this time. Not until they have a rabies outbreak and there are so many of them and a shortage of game animals that the overpopulated predators become even more brazen than they are now and take a few kids out. A few folks I know are trapping them with #3 and #4 leg hold traps, far less time consuming and much higher “yield” as long as you know how to set them up and criss cross your stakes to keep them from being yanked out, but you know leg hold traps are viewed as even more evil than an ethical hunter with a gun, and there is always a legit risk of trapping something that wasn’t intended accidentally.

  • Rod Smedes

    Can anyone on this forum suggest a free place to find a veterinary job?

  • Christina Coyote

    Don’t be afraid of a Coy-Wolf. Keep a respectable distance and marvel at their beauty. We must all learn to live in harmony, and practice Human Management, not animal management. An overly populated planet with people producing too many off spring is our problem, not a Coywolf in the community. They will keep their distance.

    • We have definitely invaded their space and although the one a few years ago was big and strong … the one crossing our yard lately is looking a little less healthy. The winter of 2013-14 has been hard on the animals. Thanks for commenting Christina.

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.