A Kelowna woman is warning others of the dangers of wildlife in the Thomson Flats trails area after a coyote attacked her dog.
On May 17, Dawn Sleiman was walking down an embankment in the area with her dog Bailey, who ran ahead into a nearby creek. Due to loose gravel, Sleiman said she kept her head down as she descended the hill.
“I heard her yelp. When I looked up, I could see her wrestling with something, then I realized it was a coyote,” said Sleiman. “That’s when I started to scream, wave my hands and charge towards them. At the same time, she was able to break away from it and she ran back to me.”
Sleiman backed up the embankment with Bailey by her side, not taking her eyes off the motionless coyote that stood 15 to 20 feet from her.
“It stayed there. But I have to be honest; I would’ve been scared of me too,” she said. “I was screaming at the top of my lungs. I was waving my arms. I was surprised all of Kelowna didn’t hear me.”
It wasn’t until she got home when she and her husband noticed that Bailey, a Brittany Spaniel who turns five in June, was licking the blood-covered wound sustained on her left leg.
“We noticed it was quite deep, so we called the vet hospital right away,” she said. “They suggested bringing her in; luckily, she had her rabies shot in September.”
Bailey has since been prescribed pain medicine to ease the discomfort in her leg. A drain was placed in the laceration area, but Sleiman said the wound isn’t exuding any fluids.
“I can’t do anything with her for two weeks. It could be interesting,” she said.
She added that the big takeaway from the encounter is how crucial proper dog training is.
“Training is very key, especially if you’re going into wildlife off-leash. If she didn’t have that, who would’ve known how she would have reacted,” she said.
“Don’t let your dogs go after wildlife because here you just don’t know what would happen with them.”