Close Encounter of the Coyote Kind

Yep, I had a run-in with a coyote. I’ve been chasing them alongside Logan for the four years I’ve been living here and they’ve always outrun us, never allowed us to get very close, until last week. This one came after me, and he was quick, catching me in the back leg with his teeth. I’ve always thought of coyotes as just one more prairie varmint to chase, like gophers or rabbits or deer, harmless creatures that provide good sport. I didn’t really think about coyotes being canine like us, and therefore possessing their own big, sharp teeth and an instinct to fight, or even kill. I got bit in the nose by a gopher once—ouch—but it didn’t compare to the fear I felt when that coyote grabbed my back end.

A reenactment.

And what did I do? Well, a bigger dog might have stayed to fight, but I ran home, as fast as my short legs would carry me. In fact, I ran so hard, so fast that I felt like I was going to have a heart attack by the time I got back to T and Nollind and their friends who were on the deck having dinner. After gulping down a bowl of water all I could do was lie there and pant, for an hour it seemed. And then, around 11 that night when I’d caught my breath and we were all tucked into bed, my stomach heaved, and then again. I was up four times overnight, T there with me, cleaning up and comforting me. I guess it was all the adrenaline, or maybe the gallon of water, but I couldn’t keep my stomach from lurching until about 4 in the morning.

Dinner with Chris & Sheila (photo compliments of Sheila).

The bite. Ouch.

It was while T was petting me that night that she discovered the dried blood on my hip. The next morning when she cleaned things up, there they were, two holes in my upper leg, and we were off to the vet. Usually I see Dr. Julie, but she wasn’t there, so we saw Dr. Taryn. She seemed very nice at first, just as nice as Julie, but then she took me to a back room and put some kind of instrument up inside my wounds to see how deep they were and man that hurt. I couldn’t help but scream my head off. I’m sure the whole clinic heard me, including T who was waiting out by the reception desk. The vet tech took me back to T afterward and, when Dr. Taryn came out with my medications she said, “I don’t think Chico loves me anymore.” You got that right, lady.

Nollind icing his foot before the drilling.

Crazy thing was, while T and I were in town at the vet, Nollind got hurt when a horse stepped down hard on his foot. But, he was lucky, he didn’t have to see a vet, all he had to do was drill a hole in his toenail and most of the pain just went away…after the blood gushed out. Nasty.

A few days later, and a better way to spend an evening.

My wounds have mostly healed now and I had my last dose of antibiotics this morning. There was coyote scent along the canal on Friday and I couldn’t help but get excited along with Logan. We were on leashes with no opportunity for a chase so I can’t say for sure if I would have or not. T says she hopes I learned my lesson, but I’m not sure I understand. People seem to regularly repeat things that cause them pain or distress so, in my quest to be human, I’m not sure I can turn away.


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