WALLINGFORD -- Spring is a very active time of year for coyotes and one Wallingford family learned that the hard way.
Dogwood Lane is a peaceful, small neighborhood. At least until the Martin family let their two chihuahuas out Monday night at 10 p.m.
"They kind of roam around, do their thing and then we call them back in," said Angie Martin.
A couple of minutes later Angie Martin heard Khloe, their female Chihuahua, bark. Then, she cried. So her husband, Ryan Martin, ran outside.
"He said it was a huge coyote," said Angie Martin.
On the side of the house near the woods, there was a severely wounded Khloe, near the coyote. So, Ryan Martin scooped her up.
"He brought her in, wrapped in a warm towel, so that we could all pet her before he brought her to the vet," said Angie Martin, knowing the news probably would not be good.
Khloe did not survive. And their other chihuahua, Cody, who was let outside at the same time, has still not been found.
"We think the coyote took him first," said Angie Martin.
The Martin children will miss the fun they had with Cody and Khloe, who fit nicely into their hoodies.
"I would put them under it, put their heads through and put mine under, put the hood on them so you can't see the rest of my face," said a smiling Logan Martin, a third grader.
This morning, Angie Martin says she came downstairs to let Khloe and Cody out of their cage.
"The whole thing just washed over me and I'm like 'wow this is the new morning routine.'"
On May 6, a dog was killed by coyotes in New London.
There are ways to protect yourself and your pets from coyotes:
- Don't leave your pets outside alone, especially at night.
- Take down bird feeders.
- Put your garbage cans away in your garage or shed.
- If you encounter a coyote, stay away and make loud noises.
The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection says the risk of coyote attacking people is extremely low but the risk increases if you intentionally feed them.