Coyotes with mange are being confused with stray pets in Chicago suburbs, Hanover Park police said.
People have reached out to police with concerns about what they think are malnourished or neglected stray dogs. The sarcoptic mange causes the coyotes to lose some hair and develop infections, police said. Eventually, they end up looking like some kind of “zombie” dog.
The infections impact their eyesight, which has led these normally nocturnal animals to become more active during the day.
Police warn people not to approach the coyotes, and to keep pets away from them as well. Don’t leave food outside, and secure garbage as to not attract the animals.
There has not been a documented coyote bite in Illinois in the past 30 years, according to the University of Illinois. The mange, however, is contagious to animals, so keep your pets away from any of these animals you may see.
Coyotes are abundant in the southern, southeastern and west-central areas of Illinois, according to the Department of Natural Resources.