Toddler in hospital after an apparent coyote attack in Edmonton park
EDMONTON -- A two-year-old girl is in hospital after an apparent coyote attack in a west-Edmonton park.
The toddler was playing in Coronation Park Monday evening, taking in fresh air with her grandfather, when he says the coyote struck.
“She was running around by a mound and she went running down that,” said the girl’s grandfather, John Starr.
Starr sat down a short distance away when he spotted the coyote.
“I took a double look and I saw it was a coyote and I got up, I ran,” said Starr. “She came back holding her ear and I thought, oh my God.”
Starr says he didn’t see the attack, due to his granddaughter, Kavana, going over the mound when she encountered the coyote.
She was taken to hospital and needed reconstructive surgery on her ear.
“She had 10 staples in her head… It’s actually a miracle that she came out of it as she did,” said Kavana’s aunt, Rochelle Starr.
The attack was reported to Alberta Fish and Wildlife.
Alberta Fish and Wildlife say they located the coyote the following day and in the interest of public safety, the animal was euthanized.
It has also been submitted for rabies testing to ensure the child is not infected.
The incident wasn’t the first time visitors of the park had to fend off a coyote.
Kathleen Herbert was walking her dog, Foster, Tuesday morning when she encountered a coyote.
“He just kept eyeing the dog. I thought he was trying to figure out a way to get around me to get my dog,” said Herbert.
“I just kept yelling at it and it would take three steps back and then come forward again when (Foster) would come around again.”
During the ordeal Herbert tripped, as the coyote zeroed in on the pair.
“He was about four feet away from me and I just swung the leash at him and I was yelling. He stepped back a bit, but he followed us the whole way.”
Herbert was so shaken by the ordeal that she was reluctant to return to the park.
“The adrenaline was just so intense. I never ever want to go through that again.”
Signs have now been sprinkled throughout the park to alert people of the potential presence of coyotes, however the Starr family wants to alert others of the potential risks.
“Nobody realized that it was a coyote so it wasn’t on people’s minds,” said Starr.
“I didn’t expect it, but I don’t blame the coyote.”
With a report from CTV News Edmonton’s Amanda Anderson