23 September 2011

A walk when nobody gets eaten by the coyote.

Walked out into the field last night, sun going down, just going for our walk. Not as far out as the cliff tonight, just because. Just going out and across and back through the grease weed, a short walk before the sky goes black so the dogs and me can stretch our legs and shake off the day.

This dog is out on the path, walking towards us. Right away, I look at those ears and skinny shoulders and that's no dog. That's a coyote. Big one. Like it really, really likes to eat. Never, ever seen a coyote out there in our field, always hoped and figured, coyote-free. If you have a team small dog, you need to spend time in places without coyotes.

So I call the dogs. We just started our walk and for them, a walk is a run, straight down the path towards Mr. C. Otterpop saw it, and she is in right away. Otterpop, irritating and evil as she can be, she's no dummy. You come in when there's a coyote. Now. Ruby I don't think sees it but she's in right away. She never strays far anyways.

Gustavo. Does. Not. Come. In. The coyote is walking us down, it's a lot closer than I want it to be and I don't much want to turn my back on it. I keep still and it keeps moving our way. That seems like not so good for us in coyote language. Too bold. I attach the other dogs on leashes for just in case and we start moving backwards, keeping our eyes on the coyote. I keep talking towards Gustavo and creep back. Seemed like the right thing to do.

I don't want Gustavo to run and look like prey. He weighs in at 11lbs on a good day and I think gives off an air of bunny rabbit. And damn, untrained fool that he can be, is just not coming in. I put the other dogs on a lie down behind me and sit low in the path for a minute. This looks warm and fuzzy to Gustavo and probably like some kind of trick training with free treats to all, and he meanders to me and I make a quick grab. Got him.

He goes on a leash and I stand there for a bit, to see what the coyote's gonna do. The dogs are pissed. We are supposed to be walking and not stuck in a lie down, attached on to ropes.

We all just stand there then he steps into the high weeds, just to the side of the path. I think he is trying to tell me, bring those snacks down now, plenty of room.

I creep back to the road. Our field is sort of ruined. Coyotes in the bushes now. I walk across the road to the pond. Not my favorite place anymore, too many guys sleeping and shitting behind the trees, especially as the sun goes down. Within a minute, crazy guy busts out of the bushes and scares us all off. Not as subtle as the coyote was.

Short walk last night. Now not sure, how do we all share our field, with no dogs being eaten by the newest resident?


Anonymous said...

and i thought rattlesnakes were scarey. at least i can avoid places/times when they are out and about, and coyotes in my mountains run away, unlike urban coyotes. people poop, drunks, and the insane- ten times worse.

Anonymous said...

It sounds like you did the right thing. I came upon a coyote chasing a jackrabbit while I was walking in a field with my 4 lb. dog..carrying her so she wouldn't get foxtails. When he saw us, he stopped, I did not make eye contact. He must have thought we were statues so he just walked off.

team small dog said...

Yes, we have many coyote locales around here, mostly I try to avoid them at dusk, which is usually when we're out walking. Or at least walk everybody on leashes and keep an eye out. This was my one perceived coyote-free locale for dusk time dog running...skinny coyotes scare me, they need food and would eat little dogs. And fat coyotes scare me, they have been eating food, which might be little dogs.

CA Pet Palace said...

Super scary! I'm glad it all worked out. Sad though that you now have to worry about where you walk.

GooseMaverick said...

My daughter lives in Tahoe and just told me that one of the parks where she walks dogs, coyotes are grabbing small dogs right off the leash, even with owners on the other end of the leash! One of her bosses got a semi-auto pellet gun to hit coyotes and strange men but not bears.