River Forest officials are urging residents to keep a watchful eye on their pets while outside after a coyote recently killed a small dog at Priory Park.

Officials also mentioned receiving reports from residents about sighting coyotes, which are coming into the neighborhoods from Cook County Forest Preserves in search of food.

An announcement came during the elected officials’ comments at the March 13 board meeting.

“They travel in packs. Make sure you have your dogs on a leash,” Village President Catherine Adduci said. “Coyotes come out at dusk and dawn, so make sure to walk your dog in the daylight. Be vigilant.”

Adduci said don’t run if you see coyotes. Rather, clap your hands, make some sort of loud noise and they will run away.

“We cycle through this every couple of years,” Village Administrator Eric Palm said.

Information about coyotes has been posted on the village website. Here are some things to remember: 

  • Coyotes are generally not dangerous to humans, but they are can be territorial when protecting their young and should not be approached.
  • Small pets may be considered prey by coyotes, so don’t leave your pets outside unsupervised.
  • Never feed coyotes, don’t leave food outside and make sure any trash containers outside are covered securely.
  • Do not leave small pets unattended outside, even in a fenced-in yard.
  • Do not allow a coyote to get in between you and your pet or child.

Additional information can be found on the websites River Forest and the Cook County Forest Preserve District

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