Residents blame coyotes for pets disappearing in Hunt Club neighbourhood

It’s a pet owner’s nightmare that Matthew Lisk never thought he and his family would have to deal with.

Peanut, the family’s eight-month-old Yorkie pup, has gone missing. Lisk and his fiancée believe she was snatched by a coyote. Neighbours in the area say sightings of coyotes have become common on Pinson Private, in the Hunt Club area. The family’s next-door neighbour even took a video of a coyote walking past her font door.

“It’s upsetting, it’s very upsetting; I have a small child and a fiancée and our house is very upset right now,” Lisk said. “There have been lots of people in this area who have lost pets. A fellow down the road lost his dog, an elderly couple nearby lost their cat the other day as well. It’s ongoing.”

One coyote has little fear of people and will walk right up to residents’ carports when they are outside. Lisk’s fiancée, Nathalie Lebrun, had to chase one off with a golf club last week.

“We are fearful someone else will get hurt, especially a small child,” Lebrun said. “We are hoping and praying no more animals get taken.”

The community has some small green spaces adjacent to the houses. Neighbours walking through the area have seen what appear to be entrances to coyote dens, which some have blocked with rocks in the hopes of discouraging the animals.

Lisk and his family hope the city will take action and humanely deal with the problem.

“We have a small park and a lot of children paly there,” Lisk said. “My concern is what’s going to happen if a child get bitten or worse.”

Coyote calls have been on the rise in Ottawa.

In 2021, the city of Ottawa received 476 calls related to coyote sightings and the city says there were more than 340 calls as of mid-September this year; however, multiple calls might be related to the same animal.

Ottawa Bylaw said last month it was in the process of hiring a wildlife specialist to keep track of coyotes’ movements in the city. 

–With files from CTV News Ottawa’s Dave Charbonneau.

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