Our dogs love to be outside, playing, running around, exploring the woods. With outside play, however, comes the opportunity for our dogs to have an encounter with wildlife. Today we will talk about desert animals native to Arizona and what to do, and what not to do, if your dog has an encounter with one.
Animal encounters are becoming more eminent even if we live within the confines of a city. Land is being developed at a rapid pace, what was once a field or a forest is now a subdivision or shopping center. The animals need someplace to go and this need often drives them to our yard and to our trashcan. Proper yard maintenance is key to preventing, or eliminating visits from Arizona wildlife.
Your first step in eliminating wildlife is to install a fence, the type of fence is up to you but it doesn’t necessarily need to be expensive.
Next, don’t feed the animals, and make sure your neighbors aren’t feeding the animals. Don’t leave dog or cat food outside at night as this is certain to draw raccoons and skunks to your backyard. These animals also enjoy bird seed and are drawn to bird feeders. Keep seeds and fruits to a minimum in your yard.
Another way to maintain a clean yard is to clean up dog waste. This often- overlooked chore is a necessary evil that comes with owning a dog. If you find this difficult to do, you can always hire a pet waste removal service to do the job for you. For around $10.00 a week, you can schedule a regular clean up with a company such as Arrowhead Pooper Scoopers, of Peoria Arizona. Call them today, at (602) 391-0160 for a free quote.
Once you eliminate the dog waste, properly dispose of garbage. Wild animals will gravitate to your yard in search of food. Keep your garbage can lid securely closed, buy a metal trash, or if possible, keep your garbage indoors until trash day. If it’s not possible to keep your trash indoors, dab ammonia on your trash bag before tying it and throwing it in the garbage can. When the animal tries to tear into the bag, they will smell the ammonia and hopefully turn and run away.
Animals, such as the Javelina, or collard peccary, are medium sized and they resemble a wild boar. They are found in the southwest region of the United States, common in Flagstaff, Phoenix and Tucson.
Javelina are most active at night when the sun goes down and the air is cool but it’s possible to see them during the day as well if the weather is cold. They tend to travel in herds, from two, to twenty and they rely on each other to defend their territory. They are not problem animals, unless startled, but you can minimize danger to your dog, and to yourself, if you find one taking up residence in your yard. Javelina eat dog waste, and animal waste when available, so as discussed, keep your yard free of any pet waste. Javelina may also visit your yard if they are thirsty. They have sharp teeth and can easily chew through a hose. They will also drink from your pool or eat your vegetation.
Coyotes and Javelina are natural predators so if you see one, try to scare it off. Make loud noises by banging pots and pans or throw rocks at them. If the animal is confined, open a gate and have everyone vacate the area. Allow the coyote or Javelina to leave on its own. If you are walking your dog and you see one, leave the coyote or Javelina alone and walk in a different direction. If you or your dog is attacked, seek medical attention immediately. Coyote and Javelina can carry rabies, distemper, and salmonella.
Coyote and Javelina are just a couple animals native to Arizona, you may also encounter rattlesnake, prairie dog, bighorn sheep and the roadrunner. Living in peace with wildlife is possible if you take the necessary steps to protect your yard, yourself, and your dog.