San Jose pet owners warned after cats killed by coyotes

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There are now two neighborhoods in San Jose where coyotes are turning house cats into their food supply. And residents are especially on alert after being told they will need to deal with this problem on their own. (KGO-TV)

Two cats killed by coyotes in the past week have residents on edge in a quiet San Jose neighborhood. They're even more disturbed after seeing surveillance video of the coyotes stalking their prey right in their front yards.

There are now two neighborhoods where coyotes are turning house cats into their food supply. And in this case, the coyotes are moving deeper into urban areas. However, residents are being told they will need to deal with this problem on their own.

It was 1 a.m. when a neighbor's surveillance camera caught two coyotes in the dark of night walking down Elmgrove Lane, stalking a cat named Luna. The kill happened just out of view of the camera.

"We learned of it when a phone call woke us up the next morning from our next door neighbor," said Luna's, owner Alan Schaer. "They found our cat dead and half-eaten."

What bothers Schaer and other neighbors is that coyotes appear to be moving further inland from the mountains and creeks in search of food and water. The last known incident of a coyote killing a cat was a month ago to the west of this neighborhood.

"It's pretty devastating, too, because we just heard of another neighbor who found their cat killed by a coyote just a couple of days ago," said Schaer. "So obviously the problem's not going away. It's not just a random incident."

The video was shocking to Whitney Kearney, whose security camera captured the attack and the aftermath.
RELATED: San Jose neighborhoods on alert after several coyote sightings

"They were out there for a good at least 15 minutes after they found the cat and killed it," she said. "We spotted them on the tape for at least 15 minutes later."

Julie St. Gregory, spokesperson for San Jose Animal Care Center, says coyotes aren't going away, so the best advice is to keep cats inside at night or build what's called a "cateo" -- an enclosure made of gopher wire and deer fencing for about $75.

"You want your cat to be happy and to do that, if you build something like this, which isn't hard, it's not difficult, you have a solution for everybody," she said.

San Jose Animal Care doesn't respond to coyotes and state wildlife says it intervenes only if a human is bitten.
Related Topics:
petspetcatsanimalanimal attackanimal newsanimals in perilwild animalscoyotesSan Jose
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