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Sunday, December 4, 2022
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Child Attacked by Coyote in Lake Highlands

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Coyote from the attack | Image by Advocate Lake Highlands

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On Tuesday morning, a two-year-old child was attacked by a coyote while sitting on the front porch of his home in Lake Highlands.

Around 8:30 a.m., Dallas Police arrived at the 9200 block of Royalpine Drive, where the attack occurred.

The child was transported to a hospital and admitted in critical condition. His family states that his condition has since stabilized.

“That boy was sitting on his front porch and that animal came right up to the porch unphased whatsoever and attacked him. It’s gut-wrenching,” said neighbor Anthony Divenuti to NBC DFW. 

The wild animal was spotted near a park on Royalpine Drive, and an officer shot at it before it fled into the woods. It is unclear whether a bullet struck the coyote.

Multiple agencies, including the Dallas County Game Warden, Dallas Police Department, and Dallas Animal Services, were actively working together to locate the coyote.

Dallas Animal Services (DAS) reported the coyote was isolated in a forested area around 3 p.m. Tuesday after being discovered by the Dallas Police Department’s infrared drone. The city’s wildlife biologist was sent to the area.

DAS said in a statement that the incident demonstrates why residents must treat all wildlife as wild — because when wild animals become too comfortable near people, attacks can occur. Such situations put both humans and animals at risk.

Several neighbors said they had seen the coyote in recent weeks and called the city to report it.

On the website Nextdoor, which serves as a social networking service for neighborhoods, some individuals offered their thoughts on the attack.

“I read additional info that the neighborhood had ‘befriended’ the coyote,” said Dory Cox, a member on the site. “He would take food from their hands. This is a huge mistake. It takes away their fear of human.”

“Animals are going to animal,” said Jason Thompson, another user. “Be more careful, folks.”

Dallas Animal Services set up cameras and traps in the neighborhood on Wednesday to help capture the coyote.

The agency warns that if a person comes across a coyote, they should try to scare it humanely by making noises with pots and pans, utilizing body language like waving arms and standing tall, or throwing small objects like tennis balls toward the animal.

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