Since our coyote neighbors have been a recent and heated topic of discussion in Oceana, we’ve been learning some practical ways to protect our pets and make our community less attractive to them.  Don’t leave garbage, dog food or any edibles outside ever (this includes bird seed which attracts rats and rabbits—the coyotes favorite food). Discard all overripe fallen fruit, since this also attracts rats and rabbits.  Don’t leave bowls of water outside (Note: standing water also attract mosquitoes).  Never leave pets outside unattended—remember, there are no fences in Oceana. Always keep Rover on a short leash and don’t walk him on the side of the street closest to the open canyon areas where the coyotes live. 

A few residents have also recently reported seeing rattlesnakes in our community. Just like the coyotes, rabbits and rats, rattlesnakes are also native to this region and they’ve all been living here for hundreds of thousands of years.   Here are a few safety tips for avoiding contact with this deadly reptile. If you are gardening or out for a walk do not reach into a bush where there might be a rattlesnake nest.  Don’t let your dogs run into a bush where they might get bitten.  If you have to take Rover out for a walk after dark, carry a flashlight and watch your step. Snakes are cold blooded and sometimes like to warm themselves on the pavement in the evening.