Most of the time, coyotes prefer not to have any interaction with humans. But, when they're looking for love, these elusive animals can act very strangely and pose a potential danger to humans and some animals.

January and February are the two months where coyotes in Colorado are most interested in mating and are on a quest for the perfect match. During this time, their behavior can be as erratic and seemingly irrational as a love-struck teenager.

While it's never a good idea to approach or have contact wild animals, Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) officials advise people to be especially cautious if they encounter a coyote during mating season.

Here are some tips from CPW to help keep you and your pets safe.

  • Don't feed coyotes or any other wildlife. Also, if coyotes are in the area where you live or visit for recreation, make sure all food, including trash, are kept in a secured container.
  • Protect your pets - Coyotes are opportunistic omnivores so they have no problem eating plants and small animals including your dog or cat if they appear to be an easy catch.
  • If a coyote approaches, making loud noises and throwing rocks or sticks in the general area without hitting the animal is usually all it takes to make them decide you're not worth the trouble.

Coyotes have the ability to adapt to almost any conditions, so they can find an urban environment as appealing as their natural wilderness habitat if there's is adequate food and shelter.

[Colorado Parks and Wildlife]