Officials warn coyote mating season could make them more aggresive

PHOENIX - The mating season for coyotes is underway, and officials warn they could become more aggressive.

The mating season means coyotes will be protective of their dens, which officials said could be anywhere around the Valley.

"My heart was pumping," said Mary Frieling, who routinely walks her dog and has seen several coyotes in the past few weeks near 32nd Street and Campbell Avenue in Phoenix.

Frieling said she has become more aware and officials want you to do the same.

"Most reasons they come to your house or your neighborhood is they're attracted to food, water or shelter," said Hillary Cummens with Southwest Wildlife.

If you feed the animals, they are more likely to become used to humans and linger in the community. While they are mating, they could be more likely to attack small animals, such as dogs, if they come too close to the den.

Cummens said if you see a coyote, banging pots and pans together, or using a hose, can help scare away the animal.

Cummens told ABC15 the mating season lasts several months. She also credited coyotes with helping keep the rodent population down.

However, Frieling hopes she doesn't come across any more while on her walks with her dog.

"I really have no other choice than to be very, very vigilant," she said.

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