Outdoor spaces can be beautiful to your pet and not just for your pet but for other wildlife too. A fence is not effective every time at keeping out predators, especially those that can fly or slither and are not always obvious either, where some of the smallest predators are the most deadly.
Many pets go missing because of these fierce creatures. Coyotes do attack, and sadly, coyotes could kill cats and dogs and not just injure them. Coyotes are found in North America and make their homes in river corridors, parks, and even cemeteries. So, if you live in the coyote region, you should think first about letting your pets out overnight. Do not leave open garbage or any food out overnight, as it attracts coyotes, and ensure to secure the trash, as these predators are resourceful scavengers.
Cougars, mountain lions, or pumas are in the far west and the southwest US. Their sightings are no longer rare as once they went to extinction, cougars have increased. In the United States, the only known population is in rural Florida. If you live in areas where they are found, these big cats pose a danger for outdoor pets. Though cougars tend to hunt livestock, they will attack a dog if an opportunity arises. It is rare, but attacks on humans have been reported as well, so if you see a cougar in your backyard, immediately notify animal control or police.
Snakes pose the main lurking danger to your pet. News reports of most snakebites in the United States come from the pit vipers, a species of venomous snakes that includes copperheads and water moccasins, found in wilderness all over North America. Attacks by these reptiles occur when a dog is moving through the yard and sniffing in burrows. As it is difficult to prevent a snakebite, but they are usually not fatal. If a snake bites your pet, immobilize it, and bring it to your veterinarian immediately.
Even in urban environments, raccoons pose a danger to your pet. Their main danger to your pets is diseases that they carry, especially rabies. It’s more likely that the raccoon will retaliate and attack than the other way around.
Wild rats are everywhere. They’re aggressive, hardy, intelligent, and comfortable in rural and urban environments. Just like raccoons, their biggest threat from rats is the diseases they carry. Keeping your garbage enclosed is the best way to protect yourself from rats. Check and ensure that they weren’t injured during the fight, though your dog will probably be the winner in any encounter with a wild rat.
Hawks and Falcons
To small dogs, large birds of prey could also pose a danger. They generally tend to hunt rodents but could mistake a small dog for a target. Train and supervise your dog when they are outside and, if possible, stay covered. If you do see a predator bird, pick up your dog or take them inside. Hawks and owls won’t carry more than their weight, so these birds of prey don’t fall to attack dogs often. Rabbits and squirrels are their preferred dinner fare. If you see one of these predators in your yard, try to scare the bird away by making a noise, showing light, or covering and securing your dog from the threat.
Domestic to the southwestern United States, scorpions threaten pets who live there. Watch your pets closely, and if your pet seems to be tracking something to catch, examine and make sure he isn’t chasing any scorpion. Scorpion venom can be deadly, so if your dog is limping or seems sick after spending time outside, bring him to the vet for immediate medical attention. Do not leave footwear or clothing out during the daytime, as scorpions like to take shelter in and under these items.
Stay calm and try to scare the animal away by making a noise or shining light if you see one of these predators in your yard or backing away and securing your dog from the threat. It’s not like these animals can only be found in wild areas but can be in your backyard, so stay safe and keep your lovable pet safe!!