Pet Coyote

I live in rural North Dakota. Out here, farmers, ranchers and everyone else hates coyotes. Coyotes are blamed for everything: killing cattle, sheep, pets, and even kids. They are hunted, trapped and poisoned. Nevermind the fact that rodents and other small animals are their main diet. Anyway, last spring, I bought a year old female coyote from a man who had raised her from a little pup and who couldn’t keep her where he lived anymore. She was beautiful, tame and healthy, (had been vaccinated for rabies) and was not allowed to run loose. She was just another one of my “dogs”. A nosey neighbor of mine found out I had her, and turned me in to the Game Warden. In North Dakota, it’s against the law to have a coyote for a pet. The Game Warden came out to my house, took my pet, and had her euthanized. They wouldn’t even consider taking her to a zoo, because it’s their policy out here that if someone has a wild animal for a pet that isn’t legal, it has to be euthanized. They also tried to fine me $1,300, but the judge was kind and lowered the fine to only $100. The Game Warden treated me like I was a hardened criminal. He came out to my house 3 times trying to get me to tell who I got the coyote from. I never told him. I am a 66 yr. old nurse who has never broken a law in my life. My biggest “crime” is my love of animals. I am really upset that with all of the problems in the world today, and all the really bad things that are happening, I would get treated this way. And the poor coyote, had to pay with her life because she had the audacity to be someone’s pet. My respect for the “law” has been ruined.

– Lucille Gould

 


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