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Animal bite involving a child possible near Cook County

Most people don't associate a nearby community of Chicago with the likelihood of a coyote attack. However, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources has recently provided some tips to help residents of Westmont, Illinois, and other communities to learn how to live with these and other wild animals.

According for an IDNR spokesman, citizens are not allowed to possess wildlife unless they have a proper permit. Coyotes are not trapped by the village of Westmont, which is generally the case in most municipalities. Coyotes are considered nocturnal; however, it is very possible to see these animals during the day.

If you come face-to-face with a coyote, it's important to appear in control and bold. Make yourself look large by raising your hands above your head. Making loud noises can help scare them away.

Don't leave your dogs in your yard by themselves and keep your dog on a leash when you're out for a walk. The IDNR says that many attacks by coyotes against dogs are due to a dog attacking first. If you have come across a "den," be sure to keep children and pets away. An animal attack involving a child could occur if a coyote thinks that her young are in danger.

In order to reduce the chances of seeing a coyote arrive at your home, keep your outside lights on when you are in your yard at night and keep your trash and grills clean.

While these tips may not prevent all wild animal attacks, it's obvious that the IDNR is doing something right. There hasn't been a coyote that bit a human in Westmont and the surrounding country.

Source: The Bugle, "Westmont warns residents of coyotes, other wildlife" No author given, Apr. 30, 2014

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