Lakes at Hazel Dell resident recalls coyote attack



It’s a story that seems to get retold nearly every year in Carmel. Another coyote attack has been reported recently and it likely isn’t the only such incident in 2015.

Teresa and Mike VanZetta, residents of the Lakes at Hazel Dell neighborhood, were letting their 1-year-old cockapoo named Teddy out to relieve himself on the evening of Feb. 6.

“He had not been outside for more than a minute and we heard the squealing sound from the dog and we knew something was wrong,” she said. “My husband ran out the door instantly and he scared off these two coyotes. They ran twenty or thirty yards away and they stopped and they just looked at him.”

She said her husband rushed to pick the dog – visibly wounded – up off the ground and the coyotes held their gaze, staring down the humans instead of running off out of fear.

They rushed Teddy to the veterinarian and surgery was performed to stitch together the ripped muscle. Their dog now is kept crated so he doesn’t move and the muscle can heal.

The VanZettas, along with their children ages 16, 15 and 8, have lived in their neighborhood for eight years. They have heard whispers of coyote sightings in the area, but they are surprised to find out how brazen these predators can be.

“I have worried about it because people mention it,” she said. “But people always tell us that unless they’re attacked they won’t bother you. And we make sure the dog is just outside the door when we let him out and he was. He was right outside the patio.”

Teresa said they have discussed hiring a trapper or building a fence, but in the end there isn’t much they can do except keep Teddy right by their side at all times.

“It kind of cuts the freedom off from letting your dog roam the yard,” she said. “If you live in an apartment, you kind of expect that you have to have your dog on a leash at all times, but you don’t expect that when you buy a house.”


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