Dorothy Kwan had just left for work on Tuesday morning. Overall it was going to be a normal day.
That was until he saw his daughter’s name on his cell phone’s caller ID. Strangely, she thought, 10-year-old Lily Kwan was contemplating a walk with her dog, going to a familiar park where “she always goes.”
He was her neighbor at the other end of the line. Yorkshire Terriers Lily and Macy were chased by a coyote in a Scarborough neighborhood near Warden Avenue and St. Clair Avenue East in broad daylight.
Macy suffered multiple bite wounds as a result of what developed into a vicious attack.
WARNING: The video contains graphic content that may be disturbing to some. Viewer’s consent is advised.
“I just dropped everything and went home,” Kwan told 680 NEWS. “I found my neighbor with my daughter and our dog in the house covered in blood.”
Video surveillance of Kwan’s neighbor captured the attack in its entirety. A coyote, small in stature but fearless in pursuit, tracks down Lily Kwan and Maisie, eventually capturing the little dog.
The young girl letting go of the leash in a panic is heard screaming as she watches helplessly. She rushes to her neighbor’s house for help as the coyote tries to lift Messi by the neck and runs away, biting him several times.
Maisie runs away from the animal, the coyote appearing timid and timid. It then escapes, past the neighbors’ house, and out of sight.
Frantically, Dorothy says she called her vet but they were off. Then she called the emergency animal hospital, which took them immediately.
“He had a puncture wound on his back. She was covered in blood on her face. He had a very bad leg wound,” says Dorothy, describing Macy’s injuries.
Once their pet was cared for at a local hospital, attention quickly turned to Lily, whom Dorothy called “very brave” as she came face to face with a terrifying animal.
“She’s doing the best she can. She’s a very strong girl. She’s clearly scared and traumatized,” Dorothy says. “She goes for a walk with our dog three times a day. It’s one of her favorite things to do, go outside, go to the park with her dog, and come back.
Speaking to 680 NEWS, Lily says her instinct was to scream for help, hoping that someone, someone, would come out of their homes or come near her and her dog.
“It was running towards us at very high speed and grabbed my dog and bitten all over the body 8-10 times,” Lily says. “I rang the doorbell and couldn’t wait that long, so I went to another neighbor, and they let me in.”
The 10-year-old says it was “painful” to see a coyote in person.
“I’ve never seen one; it was very, very scary. I was like, ‘Oh my god.'”
Dorothy says that Lily – who never moves with Macy after 6:30 p.m. – saw a coyote once before but at a distance.
“We’ve never really seen one up close … we always thought it was safe,” she says. “They didn’t make it back home in one piece yesterday.”
Dorothy tells 680 NEWS that her experience with animal services hasn’t been helpful. At the time of the call they told him that their “hands are tied” and that all they can do in these cases is to talk to the residents and make sure they are educated about coyote sightings.
“My entire neighborhood has been alerted to the many recent sightings of coyotes,” she says, revealing that she’s part of a community page on Facebook called “Upper Summerside,” a recent post from concerned members. There has been a flood.
In some cases, Dorothy says that people informed Facebook groups of coyotes chasing toddlers.
“Someone told me a kid had been bitten last weekend,” Dorothy says. “Not only me but many of our neighbors have called and sent emails. Nothing has been done.”
After the attack, Dorothy said she spoke to the City of Toronto, which immediately sent a subpoena to her home. She says she expressed concern over the many sightings of “aggressive coyotes.”
The officer explained to Dorothy that capturing the animal is an option. Signs could have been posted in the neighborhood as well, but that “won’t do much.”
“And then he gave me a pamphlet,” she says. “I think they’re not doing enough. It’s one thing to have coyotes scared of people, but this coyote that attacked my dog and chased my daughter down the street wasn’t scared. She was screaming And was screaming, and she didn’t hold back.”
“This coyote was not scared, and that’s when it becomes dangerous to the people in this neighborhood. Many of them have small children. A lot of kids play in their driveway or park,” she continued.
Dorothy says the traumatic attack has left her 10-year-old daughter feeling isolated and unwilling to ride her bike or scooter around the neighborhood.
“She doesn’t want to walk the dog anymore. It’s trying too hard for her,” she admits.
“I’m scared,” Lily says. “I don’t want him to walk up to her anymore. I can walk him on the lawn.”
The concerned mother says that while she doesn’t want any coyotes to be euthanized, more needs to be done to protect neighborhoods like hers in Toronto.
“I want to capture and relocate town, especially aggressive coyotes,” suggests Dorothy. “I’m not saying put away everyone who will actually sit there or stare at you or chase your kids or run when you scream.”
She says that there was a tag visible on the coyote that attacked Maisie and chased Lily. When she mentions it to the city, Dorothy says she reiterated that there was nothing they could do about it.
As for Macy’s, Dorothy says she had 8-10 puncture wounds all over her body and leg. Macy, about 10 pounds, needed surgery.
Messi came out in stable condition and is recovering well. She was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit, where she lives. The family hopes that she will be back home by Thursday.
The vet bill will come in between $4,000 and $6,000, Dorothy says.
“It’s heartbreaking,” says an emotional Dorothy.
“She is my best friend and she loves me and my kids to death. We saved her five years ago. It is heartbreaking to see her risk her life to save my child. We Know that she loves us. Now my daughter loves our dog more than she knows how much our dog cares for her.”
Lily says she is grateful to “very caring” Macy’s for her heroism.
“He’s so brave. I love him so much.”
Dorothy wants to share her story because she hopes someone will do something about coyotes. She says the education is great, but notes that the pamphlets will do nothing if coyotes — oblivious to people — are more prone to attack small dogs or children.
“It’s a growing problem, especially for residential areas where you think it’s safe.”
Toronto Wildlife Center: Stop Feeding Wild Coyotes and Attacks Will Be Fewer
Both the City of Toronto and the Toronto Wildlife Center state that while coyotes generally do not pose a threat to humans, pets are in danger.
It’s more routine for injuries and sometimes deaths due to dogs and even cats, says Nathalie Carvonen, executive director of the Toronto Wildlife Center.
“Coyotes are labeled a bit with Big Bad Wolf Syndrome, with a real exaggerated fear of coyotes,” Carvonen tells 680 NEWS.
Carvonen says the coyotes that attacked Lily Cowan and Macy’s are actually being tracked as part of a study authorized by the Ministry of Natural Resources to track urban coyotes and their behavior.
Carvonen says this coyote is attractive because of how much this animal has been fed from within the community.
“The thing that we have been really concerned and upset about for a long time is that this coyote and other people in the area are being fed a lot all the time,” Carvonen says.
She says people feed coyotes in hopes of photographing the animals. This, in turn, creates problems.
“There are signs everywhere… They’re doing it anyway. That’s the worst thing you can do,” she says. “The situation that happened to this little girl and her dog has been exacerbated by fed coyotes.”
The City of Toronto says coyotes are active during the day and night, particularly at dusk and dawn, and help control rodent and rabbit populations.
“The abundance of food and shelter allows coyotes to thrive in urban areas,” the website reads.
Carvonen says it’s hard to say whether this attack would have happened if the coyote hadn’t been used to being regularly fed by humans.
“Coyotes don’t understand the difference between a groundhog, a rabbit, a cat, and a small dog. They don’t know that one is fine as prey, one as a food item, and the other is not… In this example… The little girl ran—which isn’t great, she wouldn’t know it, but it triggers a reaction in a lot of animals.”
Carvonen says that in this particular case, the coyote’s behavior has changed, and if the feeding doesn’t stop, there’s no point in doing anything.
As for relocating the coyote, Carvonen says it’s not a realistic solution due to several underlying factors. She also says that removing this coyote from the neighborhood means euthanizing it.
“… not at all … we want to make sure that there is no spread of disease, but we also want to make sure that wild animals are not being carried among the new …