GREGG COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) - Residents in one East Texas county have become alarmed and concerned about not only frequent sightings of coyotes, but also attacks by those animals on their pets.
And some have lost pets to the predators.
White Oak police say security video shows a coyote chasing down a house cat, later killing it. A happening that’s been reported by a number of people in Gregg County.
“We have been told of coyotes going though yards, chasing pets, they’ve seen coyotes chasing pets in their yards,” said White Oak Police Lieutenant Brannon Robertson.
From the Pinnick Park area of White Oak to inside Longview city limits, residents say they’ve had sightings of coyotes and had a number of pets disappear over the past months.
"Generally coyotes hunt in packs and usually larger animals. For one reason or another they can't go after the kind of prey they normally would and they look for what's an easy opportunity. Wildlife does not understand city limits, no boundaries they go where there are resources to survive," says Longview animal control officer Chris Kemper.
A number of sightings in Longview have been along Grace Creek. Kemper believes there may be a reason behind this. Opportunism.
“Probably older ones, you get injured ones, you get sick ones, they come upon something that’s an easy meal, it can happen,” Kemper says.
Kemper has advice on what homeowners can do.
“Make sure your pets are with you, they’re monitored, they’re not left outside at night, especially if they’re small. We recommend that people not leave any kind of pet food out. It’s a good way to attract coyotes, foxes, skunks, and raccoons,” he says.