A woman in Scarborough believes her elderly pug was snatched by coyotes Wednesday night, and the town’s police department is warning residents to be wary of the wild canines.

A police department Facebook post says the woman’s report about two coyotes attacking her dog had been confirmed, but the evidence is actually less conclusive.

The dog disappeared from a home on Horseshoe Drive, next to the Nonesuch River wetlands, said Deputy Police Chief David Grover. The dog’s owner was not identified, but police said she suspected coyotes, and there have been no signs of the pug since.

“The dog was out in the front yard for a short period of time and then was missing,” Grover said. “It was an older dog, so (the owner) believes it was more likely taken.”

In their Facebook post, Scarborough police warned the public about the risk to pets posed by the wild canines, which sometimes prey on cats and small dogs. The department suggested residents keep pets on leashes and not allow them outside without supervision after dark. Coyotes are opportunistic and can be attracted to homes by bird feeders, dropped fruit from trees, garbage, pet waste or compost materials.

Police recommend that if a person encounters a coyote, do not run, as the coyote may instinctively give chase.

“Stand your ground while yelling and wave your arms, flash a flashlight at it, blow a whistle, toss sticks or rocks toward (but not at) the coyote, and in general act a little crazy,” police recommend.

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