Thursday, October 16, 2008

Creepy Coyote

Every evening just before bed I take our two dogs out for a final potty break. A little over a week ago I did so and heard a coyote barking in the cornfield between our house and our neighbor's house. It could not have been very far away--maybe 1/8 mile--maybe less. My dogs barked and were at alert, but were not frenzied. My heart pounded in fear, though. I quickly called Roxy, our small, black, yorkie-lhasa apso mix, to my side. She came all too slowly to suit me.
I haven't heard the coyote since, but I have noticed that our other dog, Boo (part white German shepherd), has been restless at night, barking at nothing (that I can see or hear), going from window to window, nosing the night air for all it whispers to her.
Last night I saw the coyote, though, and it was too close for comfort. I drove home after picking my daughter up from a soccer match and there he was, standing just at the end of our driveway, half-hidden by some tall grass. His gaze was intent upon our open garage door. Was he after our cat, who had probably just returned home after an evening of hunting mice in the recently harvested fields? Or had someone let Roxy out? I prayed not.
I backed the car and fixed the headlights on the clump of tall grass. The coyote had flattened himself into the clump, but my daughter called out, "I see his ears!" Suddenly, he made a break for it, loping down the road. I pursued, hoping to scare him off, and he ran, but not very far, before leaping off road and into a field of unharvested corn--the same field where I'd heard him barking before. His nonchalant pace left me no doubt that he wasn't serious about leaving the area any time soon.
Later that evening, when I took the dogs out, I kept Roxy on her leash. She played and dallied and I wanted her to hurry. It gives me the creeps being outside at night when I know there is probably a coyote hidden in the corn and staring at me, trying to decide if he should take my little Roxy for a midnight snack. Coyote photo by Christopher Bruno.

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