Coyote snatches Yorkie in Narragansett, prompts warning

By Alana Cerrone

acerrone@abc6.com

@Alana_Cerrone

These days, dog owners in Narragansett are keeping their four-legged friends on a tight leash. Just around the corner, a 2- pound Yorkie was grabbed right from its backyard, and killed, by a coyote.

"It seems like they walk through my backyard all the time."

"They’ll come out at night and feed along dumpsters and trash…"

In fact, the Department of Environmental Management gets calls every day for coyote sightings.

"There are a lot of coyotes in the state right now."

In Narragansett, they make their homes near the vacant summer houses, but now that people are moving back in, the coyotes get displaced, and make their way around town looking for their next meal.

"The animals are coming right up to their back porch, their steps. By all means, never feed wildlife."

Officials warn these animals will come back day after day if they’re getting fed, whether you’re doing it on purpose or not.

"Make sure your garbage cans are sealed and put away – do not leave cat or dog food in bowls outside. "

The Chief of Environmental Police Dean Hoxsie says you can never be too careful when it comes to wildlife, like coyotes. Even he doesn’t let his dog go outside alone.

But he also wants to remind residents that the outdoors is the natural habitat for these animals, even if one is in your backyard

"We can not capture these animals and relocate them. They belong in these locations just like we do."

Coyotes aren’t the only wildlife to look out for. Chief Hoxsie says there’s a healthy population of fisher cats and bobcats like the one recently spotted in Smithfield, and now even some resident black bears.

© WLNE-TV 2017