Fairburn residents suspect coyotes behind pet attacks - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Fairburn residents suspect coyotes behind pet attacks

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FAIRBURN, Ga. -

Residents in Fairburn are worried about coyotes attacking their pets.

Lewis Dunn snapped a photograph of two coyotes near his backyard that have mauled one pit bull and killed another. One attack occurred on Mehaffee Drive, while the other was on Fayetteville Road.  

Experts say it's extremely unusual for a coyote to attack something as potentially vicious as a pit bull. But there are a couple of other unusual things about the coyotes seen in the photo. First, there are two of them. Coyotes are not usually seen together, wildlife experts say. Second, the sun is shining. Coyotes are rarely seen in the daytime.

"Usually if you see animals out like that, they might have distemper or parvo or early stages of rabies," said Dunn.

Officials believe that coyotes are feeding on pets and wildlife on the edge of the population and living in a vast area of woodlands in south Fulton County.

Lee Johnson, the owner of Uniques Taxidermy in Fairburn, has a state wildlife license to care for a deer. The coyotes have been digging nightly at the bottom of its enclosure, and Johnson fears the worst.

"They dug in about six months ago and killed one of my turkeys and took the turkey back out, so yeah they can get in," said Johnson.

The coyotes are believes to have attacked Willie Thorton's dog ,Coco, and killed another pit bull named Polo.

Johnson studies animals for a living and has clients from around the world. The coyotes have him both baffled and afraid for his wildlife and his neighbor's pets.

"I've known several people to say that their cats have disappeared to them. I had a friend that had a poodle that was yanked off his back porch here awhile back too," said Johnson.

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