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Trailriding with coyotes anyone?

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  • Trailriding with coyotes anyone?

    I need advice & thoughts on how this can be done.
    I am new to coyotes presence in our country. I live in Warrenton,Va. area which is mostly populated with foxes. But coyotes have been moving in periodically and yesterday I had a disturbing experience with a pair of coyotes while on a trailride with my 55# neutered male english springer spaniel.
    I have foxhunted for 25 years but their behavior confounded me. They came after my dog & I but I was able to break them off vocally and by riding toward them (like you would with fighting hounds etc). They barked repeatedly and followed us. The male followed us about 2 miles and broke off when I went into the open & out of the woods. He repeatedly barked & followed us very closely. Usually 30-40 ft parallel to me. Fortunately my dog responded well to my voice to stay with me and seemed to respect them ie: not go after them. Their proximity to me and brazen behavior was surprising despite my yelling & various attempts to shoo them off.
    My guess is that they might have cubs or a den near my farm which is surrounded by woods. But its kinda late for them to have cubs?? The female was larger than the male and initially more aggressive. I assume I shouldn't take my dog riding anymore. This will break his heart! He is kept in fenced in yard but is let out to run pastures at various times.
    Questions: How do you handle a situation like above? Is there anything I can carry or do to more effectively shoo them along? Should I stay in the open? Ignore them? Are they a danger to me & my horse? Danger to me on foot? Danger to my Dog? (Like Duh, yes but how so? he doesn/t seem interested in them) Any advice or cautions?
    I look to you hunters who have coyotes in your country. Thanks for sharing!!
  • Original Poster

    #2
    I need advice & thoughts on how this can be done.
    I am new to coyotes presence in our country. I live in Warrenton,Va. area which is mostly populated with foxes. But coyotes have been moving in periodically and yesterday I had a disturbing experience with a pair of coyotes while on a trailride with my 55# neutered male english springer spaniel.
    I have foxhunted for 25 years but their behavior confounded me. They came after my dog & I but I was able to break them off vocally and by riding toward them (like you would with fighting hounds etc). They barked repeatedly and followed us. The male followed us about 2 miles and broke off when I went into the open & out of the woods. He repeatedly barked & followed us very closely. Usually 30-40 ft parallel to me. Fortunately my dog responded well to my voice to stay with me and seemed to respect them ie: not go after them. Their proximity to me and brazen behavior was surprising despite my yelling & various attempts to shoo them off.
    My guess is that they might have cubs or a den near my farm which is surrounded by woods. But its kinda late for them to have cubs?? The female was larger than the male and initially more aggressive. I assume I shouldn't take my dog riding anymore. This will break his heart! He is kept in fenced in yard but is let out to run pastures at various times.
    Questions: How do you handle a situation like above? Is there anything I can carry or do to more effectively shoo them along? Should I stay in the open? Ignore them? Are they a danger to me & my horse? Danger to me on foot? Danger to my Dog? (Like Duh, yes but how so? he doesn/t seem interested in them) Any advice or cautions?
    I look to you hunters who have coyotes in your country. Thanks for sharing!!

    Comment


    • #3
      WG - no idea, but would love to hear any info, as my 3 are NOT smart enough to remove themselves from the vicinity of an irritated coyote! Do you hunt with Warrenton?

      Comment


      • #4
        Coyotes aren't usually very big and a single one would not be a threat to your dog. Also, they tend to shy away from human contact unless someones been feeding them.

        I wouldn't think they would bother with a horse.

        I wouldn't be surprised if they had some kind of kill nearby and felt that your dog was threatening to take it.

        "I thought I was dead once but it turns out, I was only in Nebraska."

        Comment


        • #5
          I would think that the biggest threat from a coyote would be that - just like fox - they can carry/transmit all of the canine diseases - distemper, mange, rabies, etc.

          My body is a temple - unfortunately, it's a "fixer-upper".

          Comment


          • #6
            A 22 pistol with rat shot would be good ( get your horse used to it ! ) Your whip might be good as well if it does not scare your dog towards the Coyote. Here in Nebraska you may shoot a Coyote at any time you want.

            I do not take my dog where our local coyotes frequent they would come out and watch us. What I do now is every time I see a coyote while I am riding, I give a tally ho yell and turn my horse and gallop after it yelling. They soon learned to turn tail and run when they saw me riding nearby!

            Same way works for a lot of the cur dogs you run into - they follow and yap and bark at you but once you turn on them and crack your whip and start after them they are long gone.

            Comment


            • #7
              Joel, fur gawdsakes, when did you become an over-reactive caveman?

              I guess I should probably get off the valium, , but I don't really get upset about the coyotes that I've come across when I ride. Now, granted my dogs weigh 70 and 120# (samoyed and newfoundland). One coyote that I have seen several times actually did the puppy "play" posture with its chest down and paws out front and tail wagging high over its head at my newf. They got within 5 feet of each other and nothing happened. No fighting, just curiosity, and whadya know, my dog didn't die of distemper. There are enough birds and rodents around to feed any even half-talented coyote. I just wouldn't get that worked up about it.

              Party on.
              http://www.camstock.net/

              Comment


              • #8
                It must be the lack of excitement around here in dullsville. Terrorizing wildlife is the high point of my otherwise uneventful life.

                Comment


                • #9
                  <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Elghund2:

                  I wouldn't think they would bother with a horse.
                  "<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                  Sorry to throw a spanner in the works but up here in South Western Ontario there have been horses killed by coyotes. In certain neighbourhoods it's just not smart to do nighttime turnout especially of foals and young stock. As for during the day while riding I have no contact experience, sorry.
                  Ahhhh, spring is here. The birds are singing, the trees are budding and the paddocks are making their annual transformation from cake mix to cookie dough.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I'm in the SW desert and mostly have had them turn tail when I yelled at them on the trail. But I have to say that I have a neighbor who was not so lucky. She was out with her Aussie tethered to a 25 lunge line which she held as she rode (walked mostly) along. A pack of a dozen coyotes surrounded them and began vocalizing as her dog came closer to her horse and she yelled at them. They did NOT retreat but instead went after her dog 2 or 3 at a time which drove it under her horses legs. The coyotes were biting at the dog and the horses legs and of course the horse reacted which may be what saved the dog as they disbanded before serious harm was done.

                    I would not take a single (or even a pair) of dogs out alone on the trails in coyote country no matter how well trained after hearing of this. This dog was also 50# or more and no matter the size because when they pack up, well you know....

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Leenah, I'm with you. After riding in the Sierras last year, I have a much different view of riding with dogs in coyote territory than I did before. We left the pointer and the Akita chaperoned in the base camp while we rode. Our hosts were native to the area and suggested it was too dangerous to the dogs to take them along.
                      http://community.webshots.com/user/premiumoldenburg

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Leenah, I'm with you. After riding in the Sierras last year, I have a much different view of riding with dogs in coyote territory than I did before. We left the Pointer and the Akita chaperoned in the base camp while we rode. Our hosts were native to the area and suggested it was too dangerous to the dogs to take them along.
                        http://community.webshots.com/user/premiumoldenburg

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Leenah, I'm with you. After riding in the Sierras last year, I have a much different view of riding with dogs in coyote territory than I did before. We left the Pointer and the Akita chaperoned in the base camp while we rode. Our hosts were native to the area and suggested it was too dangerous to the dogs to take them along.
                          http://community.webshots.com/user/premiumoldenburg

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Apologies for the triple post. My PC is making all kind of typos and mistakes tonight! LOL
                            http://community.webshots.com/user/premiumoldenburg

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Glad I read these posts. I had no idea coyotes could be such a problem. We are getting them in our area of NC too, but I've only seen one once. One of my neighbors was woken up during the night when five of them came over to play with her dog. They were in the yard playing and when she shouted at them they left. So I guess ours are still worried about humans -- hope they stay that way.
                              \"My opinion is free, and worth every penny!\"

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                              • #16
                                Best bet is to eradicate them in areas where humans , children and pets are found. Either yourself or find an interested hunter that would like to help out.

                                They have attacked childred playing out in yards.

                                Wilderness areas as was noted are especially bad as there are high numbers. Here I have only seen pairs or family groups.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  equinemidwife,

                                  The coyotes may have looked like they were playing but.... the cartoon character was not named Wiley Coyote for no reason. This is a tactic they use in hunting. They will approach as a group and play, winning over the dog's trust and getting it to pack up with them. When they go off in a pack, of course the dog follows. Usually they take the willing victim down the wash a ways where another group waits and there they all turn on the victim. Afterwards they scream their bloodcurdling screams and yips into the night (usually it's night).

                                  I have friends who have witnessed this firsthand. Another trick for a smaller dog victim is the pack has just one coyote approach and he feigns being crippled as he does so. Of course the little dog doesn't feel as intimidated and accepts him. Then he leads the little dog away to where the pack waits for dinner.

                                  I have friends who have witnessed both kinds of these attacks.

                                  Another poster described how coyotes are even attacking children in urban areas. This can and does happen even with a solitary coyote however they are much more dangerous in their packs. We humans are using up their habitat and so the paths cross now. It's really inevitable but not so dangerous if you understand what it is all about.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Leenah, thanks for the heads up. I had no idea. I will inform my neighbor ASAP.

                                    In fact, she and I were sitting out on my front porch this evening watching our horses (she's also one of my boarders) and we heard the coyotes howling. First it was howling, likes wolves, then their yapping. Kind of cool, but very eerie. My husband and one of my sons were outside and heard it too. Coyotes are new to us here, but there's definitely a pack that's moved into our "neighborhood". We're rural, so there's lots of woods and fields and farms but we certainly seem to have a very local pack.
                                    \"My opinion is free, and worth every penny!\"

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Cayotes do just play with dogs too. We have alot of cayotes where we are but they generally hang around in ones and twos. There is one that hangs out on the ball field where I walk my dogs and my little female (60# Border Collie mix) has been known to run off and play on the edge of the woods with him. There was never any intention of a kill. Plus no children here have ever been attacked.

                                      I think alot of it has to do with the number in the group. Seems to me that larger numbers will obivously be bolder and I would use caution but I have NEVER had a problem with smaller numbers with my dogs or horses. In fact I quite often see one or tow cayotes out in the field with the horses and the horses show no concern and the cayotes sho no interest in them.

                                      JackSprats Mom
                                      I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.

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                                      • #20
                                        I did a search for the newspaper articles on the horse attacks in my 'neighbourhood' but couldn't find them, sorry! It happened a couple of years ago so I guess the files are dead by now.
                                        Ahhhh, spring is here. The birds are singing, the trees are budding and the paddocks are making their annual transformation from cake mix to cookie dough.

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