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coyote Montgomery County

In a startling series of events on Thursday, March 28, 2024, Montgomery County, Maryland, became the scene of two aggressive coyote attacks. The incidents, which occurred hours apart, prompted a coordinated search effort by Montgomery County Police, Animal Services, and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, highlighting the pressing concern for public safety in the area.

The first encounter unfolded just before 10 a.m., when a woman, engaged in the routine activity of walking her dog along the 1400 block of Patuxent Drive near Watershed Drive in Ashton, found herself the target of an unexpected coyote attack. The woman was promptly taken to the hospital following the attack and is anticipated to make a full recovery, thanks to the swift response of local authorities.

Later that afternoon, around 3:45 p.m., a second woman experienced a terrifying confrontation with a coyote in the 3600 block of Bell Road in Burtonsville. Demonstrating remarkable resilience, she managed to fend off the animal, resorting to stabbing the coyote in self-defense.

The aggressive coyote’s rampage ended around 7 p.m. when law enforcement officials located the animal along a trail on Dustin Road. In a decisive action to ensure community safety, the coyote was euthanized. Further measures are being taken to examine the animal for rabies, a routine procedure following such incidents to assess any potential health risks to the victims and the wider community.

In light of these attacks, Montgomery County Police are issuing a strong reminder to residents about the importance of vigilance when encountering wildlife. Community members are urged to maintain a safe distance from coyotes and other wild animals they might encounter and to immediately report any sightings to 911 or local animal services. These incidents serve as a sobering reminder of the unpredictable nature of wildlife interactions and the necessity of preparedness and caution to prevent future occurrences.

Coyote Encounters: Safeguarding Yourself and Your Pets

Navigating encounters with coyotes, especially in areas where these animals roam near human habitats, requires vigilance and preparedness. One effective measure for ensuring personal and pet safety is carrying canine pepper spray—a specially formulated repellent designed to temporarily deter aggressive or overly curious coyotes without causing long-term harm. When walking in areas known for coyote activity, always keep your pets on a short leash to prevent them from running towards or provoking wildlife.

Additionally, maintain awareness of your surroundings, avoiding distractions such as smartphones or headphones that could prevent you from noticing an approaching coyote. If you do encounter a coyote, make yourself appear larger by raising your arms or opening your jacket, and make loud noises to scare the animal away. Never turn your back or run, as this could trigger a chase response. While coyote attacks on humans are rare, pets can be more susceptible. Therefore, employing preventive measures like carrying canine pepper spray and following safety guidelines can help ensure a peaceful coexistence with local wildlife.

As always, be safe and be prepared.


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