Read & React: Coyote Attacks Chicago Boy in City Park
December 12, 2013
Farmers and hunters have long lamented the problems coyotes present when it comes to livestock and deer populations. As it turns out, even city folks are having 'yote problems.
According to WLS-TV in Chicago, a 3-year-old boy was bitten on the face by a coyote while walking with his mother near Columbus Park on the city's west side.
Check out the video from WLS-TV in Chicago.
Emeil Hawkins was walking with his mother a couple weeks ago when they passed by an alley, where they were approached by a single coyote.
"This was a single animal that approached Emeil, but there were several animals a little further down the alley," said Bryce Kyle, the mother's boyfriend.
Both Emeil and his mother mistook the coyote for a German shepherd, but when Emeil tried to feed the animal, it became aggressive and attacked Emeil before his mother could take him away.
"My girlfriend noticed that the animal hissed and kind of yelped. At this time, she ran for her son," said Kyle.
Coyotes in urban areas are nothing new, especially in Chicago, where experts say the animals exhibit behavior different from their wild cousins, and even have a longer lifespan.
Still, this story shows the potential danger coyotes can pose to humans. Earlier this year, a Washington man was attacked by coyotes after moving into his new home. Last month, a Colorado man was attacked by coyotes while walking on a rural road, fighting the predators off with a flashlight.
Thankfully, Emeil tested negative for rabies — as did several other coyotes that were captured by city officials and later euthanized. Coyote attacks on humans are relatively rare — they actually pose more of a threat to family pets — but it's a hard lesson for Emeil and his family to learn.
"Let's talk to our children. Let's let them know that these are not the types of animals we want to pet. These are not the types of animals that we want to come around," said Kyle.