A small dog is recovering from a coyote attack that occurred Sunday on Galloping Hill Road, Fairfield police said Wednesday.
The dog -- a rat terrier -- was let out into the dark backyard at around 9:30 p.m. Sunday. Its owner heard a commotion outside and found the dog had been attacked by two coyotes shortly after being let out.
The dog was taken to its veterinarian and suffered two puncture wounds, according to the report.
Another Fairfield resident told Patch Wednesday that she heard a pack of coyotes howling near the marshes in the beach area Tuesday night.
At least five dogs were killed by coyotes in 2012 by mid-June. At a coyote information forum last month, residents were warned that the wild canines are here to stay in the region and pet owners need to remain vigilant.
Police and Animal Control officers urge residents to take precautions to safeguard pets -- especially small dogs and cats -- from coyote attacks.
Animal Control released the following tips, which can be found on the Fairfield Police Department's website:
- Feed and keep pets indoors
- Supervising pets when they are taken outdoors
- Making noise before bringing a pet outdoors at night
- Leaving a light on or taking a flashlight when letting a pet outdoors at night
- Remove brush cover from your property -- coyotes may hide in brush until they attack
- Dispose of trash and other food or coyote prey that may be on your property
- Keep your pets up-to-date with rabies vaccines
In the event your pet is attacked by a coyote:
- Do not attempt to break up the incident with your bare hands -- you could be easily bitten
- Make loud noises -- yell, bang on a metal pan, beep your vehicle's horn, use an air horn -- to scare away coyotes
- Do not handle your pet without wearing latex gloves -- saliva may remain on your pet's body
- Contain your pet in a room of your house or garage, away from members of your family, and call Fairfield Animal Control (203-254-4857) or the police department (203-254-4800) and your veterinarian right away.