Say hello to Charlie

I have to second Steve — this is an amazing blog, The Daily Coyote. A woman and a cat living in remote Wyoming have a friend, a young coyote.

This has got to be a frightening relationship. That’s a place where coyotes are shot on sight, with no remorse … maybe if a few more people read about Charlie, though, they won’t be so quick to kill.


  1. says

    That really is a wonderful site – great pictures and the coyote is so cute!


    The thought of raising a wild animal pup as a pet makes me cringe. What a terrible example this sets!

  2. Raynfala says

    Cute and heartwarming, certainly, but I worry about Eli’s future. True, cats are fairly adept at keeping their canine roomies in line, but still, we’re talking about a coyote, a critter that’s adapted to predatory behavior by necessity. This is not your average dog we’re talking here.


  3. maditude says

    We used to have about a dozen or so coyotes near our house in Hastings a few years ago (til further development chased them away, I guess). It was the funniest thing, to hear them all yipping at night, when something had agitated them. But it could be a little unnerving seeing several adults not far away in a field, while out for a walk late at night.

  4. Sven DiMilo says

    Great pics; it was fun to scroll up from the bottom to watch Charlie grow, and his eyes change color.
    But ditto to David’s comment #1…at some point I’d start worrying more about the safety of Eli the cat. It will be interesting to check back in and see what happens.

  5. shiftlessbum says

    Eli in danger? Perhaps. When I was younger I knew a guy who had raised a Great Plains Wolf (a subspecies of the grey wolf) from Canada under similar circumstance; parents killed as a pup. But this wolf also had a birth defect -lame rear leg- that precluded a return to the wild as an adult. My friend was involved (in some way, I forget how) with a wildlife rehabilitation program and this animal could not be returned to the wild.

    I met the animal when it was an adult and there was no mistaking it for a domestic dog. But though that wolf would chase birds and was not especially gracious towards other dogs, it lived among several cats, sheep, goats and other barnyard type animals (on a farm in upstate NY). Didn’t eat any of them. In fact from what I recollect, it defended them against…wait for it…coyotes living in the area.

    I guess I’m saying that Charlie may not revert to wild. He may decide to hang with Eli and his mistress. It might be good to keep a close eye on him, though.

  6. Dustin says

    Coyote calls are easy to learn and mimic, and coyote packs make for better conversation than most of the people I know.

  7. CRM-114 says

    Coyotes have been adapting to human presence. It used to be that seeing a coyote in the wild would be a rare event, but they are living closer and closer to humans, often without the humans noticing. There is an edge there, as coyotes can avoid competition from lions, bobcats, and foxes, all of which steer clear of humans.

    In 1977 at dawn in Barstow, California, I came across a very healthy looking coyote in the Beacon Bowl parking lot. He ran off to nearby residential block and disappeared — without any of the yard dogs noticing. I learned from an old-timer that a number of coyotes were living in the city and doing very well. (Game laws protect them from hunters and trappers within city limits.) They had learned not to yip (or ‘sing’ as some say). You’d never know they were around, save for missing cats and dogs, cat and dog dishes being mysteriously emptied, and trash bags being picked through. Coyotes are quite the opportunists, and so they do well with garden pests like moles, mice, and rats. Birds nesting in bushes provide a source of fresh eggs and poultry.

  8. shiftlessbum says

    CRM-114 #12

    They are getting accustomed to people. Coyotes live in the city parks here in Seattle. They eat pidgeons, mice, rats, oppossums and cats. A few years ago one got disoriented and wound up frightened & cowering, in an elevator in a downtown tower. In the early mornings I occasionally see them heading (I presume) to their dens. Like raccoons and crows before them, they are adapting to the urban environment.

  9. spondee says

    I’m not to concerned for Eli’s wellbeing. As long as Charlie sees the cat as pert of his pack, their relationship should be sound.

  10. Christianjb says

    They’re beautiful animals and that Coyote can give the LOL cats a run for their money.

  11. Thom Denick says

    It should be noted, that on her blog, she does mention that she lives next door to a park ranger or other wildlife federal employee who is an expert on coyotes. I’d imagine he’d have a lot more first-hand experience and knowledge to lend her than most of the people trying to give advice on the internets :D

  12. says

    while in general i’m opposed to laypeople raising obviously wild animals, this particular case doesn’t bother me very much. she lives in the right habitat, the pup seems to get plenty of the right food, and she’s not totally forcing him into being a “pet” – it’s a far cry from some meathead who decides owning a tiger will make him look like a big man.

    that said, she’d better resign herself to a few things – unless she has him fixed, he’s going to hit sexual maturity. for what it’s worth, my wager is that once he starts to go out in search of what all young men seek, he’ll probably just not come home one day. either that means he’s started a new life somewhere else (unlikely) or he’s been shot by someone who likes shooting animals for fun (likely).

    moral of the story? if you are considering adopting a coyote pup after seeing all of those adorable pictures, please don’t.

  13. Mary says

    I’m not to concerned for Eli’s wellbeing. As long as Charlie sees the cat as pert of his pack, their relationship should be sound.

    Um. I have a terrier-mix, domestic dog. She’s been with my other dog and my cat since she was a pup. In her mind, the other dog is her “pack”, the cat is still a potential “lunch”. I agree with the others. Eli may one day become lunch.

  14. Dee says

    I spend a fair amount of time in the deserts of Southern Utah, where the coyotes still tend to be pretty shy (they may still be targets in that neck of the woods). I’ve ony seen one once, along the highway. I hear them quite a bit though, but only in the middle of the night or right around dawn. It does kind of suck when they start doing the snooze alarm thing at dawn (howl for a few minutes, stop and wait ~15 minutes and start back up, over and over). Of course if it isn’t the coyotes making a racket at dawn, it’s the ravens.

  15. says

    We have coyotes here in Phoenix, too. I used to live near Papago Buttes, which has a bunny-populated golf course. I’d see coyotes there occasionally while I was jogging in the desert park.

    Now that I live in the center of the city, and I still see them. They trot right down the middle of the neighborhood streets sometimes.

  16. Bee says

    I share some of the misgivings voiced here – there’s very possibly grief around the corner in a situation like that. But she’s there, and we’re not, and she seems to have expert advice available, and sometimes a person has to risk doing the wrong thing while doing what seems to be the right thing.

    Not that I would do this, considering the coyotes around (Canadian Maritimes) here are almost wolf sized (often over fifty pounds), bold, numerous, tending to pack up, and are very fond of cats – for dinner. But a coyote here could be rehabbed and released with some hope of survival. They are beautiful animals and in this habitat they may become (or are becoming) the predator the local deer population needs.

  17. Peter Ashby says

    We have friends with a menagerie of rescued animals here in Scotland, including cats, dogs and rabbits. A dog and a cat go out with the friend every night to round up the rabbits and put them to bed, no problems.

    both the dogs and the cats occasionally catch and kill wild rabbits, they never touch the domestic ones or the guinea pigs. The dogs never chase the cats (too sensible). We often underestimate animal’s abilities to tell friend from food.

  18. says

    Not to worry! Even if the coyote does get shot, he’ll just turn black for a few seconds while he blinks his beady eyes comically at the camera. He’ll be completely back to normal by the next scene, and he can get back to ordering rocket boots from ACME.

  19. zhaphod says

    How in the name of all that is rational, can any one have the heart to shoot those cute coyotes.

  20. says

    I’d be concerned for the coyote’s sake about two things. One, he might think that it’s safe to trot up to any human, which makes him easy prey for hunters. Two, when he wants to mate, he will think first of humans or cats and not of coyotes.

  21. woozy says

    Nick, my gut reaction is to agree with you but I’m not convinced *anyone* knows the right thing to do. As far as turning Charlie into her pet, I believe she has the right idea and attitude that it’s not going to work that way. I’m impressed that she has no illusion that Charlie is anything but an alien animal.

    Can you elaborate on why you believe Charlie has been doomed? I don’t know how coyote societies work and if he’s doomed to never join one. Nor am I sure that growing up in domesticity is means a lack of survival skills. It’s not unheard of for such instances to have the wild dog/wolf/fox/mix be domestic forever. Nor for the animal to one day up and leave and “never look back”. And in some cases the animal will leave and be unable to survive. But I’m not sure any are an absolute certainty.

    I share your reservations, but … I guess I’m curious to see what happens. Even if it ends tragically I think we can consider Charlie’s natural life was forfeited when his parents were killed.

    If worse comes to absolute worse, I’m sure there are zoos or habitats that will be glad to take him.

    Man, though. She is a *good* photographer.

    I’d be concerned for the coyote’s sake about two things. One, he might think that it’s safe to trot up to any human, which makes him easy prey for hunters. Two, when he wants to mate, he will think first of humans or cats and not of coyotes.

    I’m no expert. But I think the second doesn’t happen. I think animals consider the individuals of alien species whom the interact with as individuals and don’t make the connection to the species on the whole. As for the first, according to the blog Charlie is afraid of other people and the blogger is encouraging this.