Thursday, January 28, 2010

What to do if you are attacked by a coyote.

Every once and a while I come across something really stupid pertaining to predators.  In this particular case, it was a WIKI with advice from people that know nothing or next to nothing about coyotes.  My comments are in bold print.  Please see the statements below:

Being confronted with a coyote is a rare experience, and will probably never happen. But it's best to be prepared, especially if you live in the country.  (Or in a major city, or in a beachfront community, or just about anywhere today.  Coyotes are now in every state in the union, they're very smart and they know where the tasty pet dogs and cats live.)
Stay calm. Make an effort to take deep breaths, even in a few seconds.  (Sure, it's easy to stay calm when a coyote is sizing up your little dog for dinner or a mid-day snack.)

See if you can find any sharp stones or sticks to throw at the animal.  (Yeah, sure....I can see Grandma scrounging for stones and hurling the high speed missiles at the coyote with accuracy....not.)

If you have an umbrella, open it quickly on the coyote as soon as you see the whites of its eyes.  (By the time you see the whites of the coyote's eyes, your dog/cat is in his mouth and is about to be carried away for lunch.  I don't know about you but I don't often carry an umbrella with me.  Perhaps this pertains to a coyote encounter in London.)

If you can find a house, yell for help. 
(Yup, but if they are inside the house watching Wheel of Fortune, The People's Court or any number of other TV shows, they won't hear your yells for help.  Even if they do, Mr. Coyote will not wait to attack your dinner on a leash.)

If a coyote attacks you:  (These are really silly.)
Try to fasten your hands around its muzzle.  (This is my personal favorite.  This is incredibly stupid.  You will be bitten for sure.  It is a wild P R E D A T O R and bites for a living.  You have a better chance of farting the Star Spangled Banner than getting your hands around an attacking coyote's muzzle.)

Try to stun it with a large stone. 
(Good luck again.  I have seen coyotes take a bullet and still go for it.)

Throw dirt, gravel, anything you can find in its eyes.  (Sure, make the target smaller.  By the time he is that close, his jaws are around your leg, arm, neck, etc.)

Do not let it get near you if possible. 
(WOW!  I never would have thought of that suggestion.)

Other sterling suggestions:
It's wise to carry a small knife if you are going to be hiking in the country alone.  (Wrong.....BIG knife.  A pistol is not a bad idea either.)
If you do receive a coyote bite, treat it quickly, otherwise it could infect.
  (INFECT?  Not to mention RABIES...genius.)
Stay calm at all times. It's much easier to think that way.  (Sure.  Mrs. Brown will be very calm if one or more snarling coyotes decide to come and visit her and Poochie Woochie.)

Don't engage a coyote in a fight if it hasn't noticed you.
  (Now there is some good advice....huh?)

Keep very clear of its teeth. If you can, restrain it without coming in range of its teeth.  (Great idea.  Now can you tell the class just exactly what method we should use to restrain an attacking coyote without coming within range of its teeth?)
Don't forget: Its claws can do damage as well.  (Get out of here.....really?  I never would have guessed.)

This is all Walt Disney's fault (tongue-in-cheek).  His cute stories and movies portraying wild animals as cute, cuddly creatures has totally misrepresented wild creatures.  As a result of that, old and young ladies (and most girlie men) are leaving food dishes out in their yards for the wild animals that come to visit.
Eventually, the predators lose their fear of man (and women) and that is when the trouble starts.  Predators start seeing kids, pets and people as prey.  California has a nasty mountain lion problem for that very reason.  The state halted lion hunting (thanks to the bed-wetting tree-huggers) and now innocent mountain bikers and hikers get attacked and killed.  The last person that was "taken" by a lion in California did not receive as much in public donation money as the lion did.  I kid you not.
For crying out loud....if you are hiking in the wilderness, carry an effective weapon and know how to use it.  You or your loved ones may be attacked by an animal or some freaked-out, deranged human type.  Protect yourself and plan for the unexpected.  Remember....when seconds count, the police are usually many minutes away.  If they show up at all.