Wild animals can and do attack our pets, leaving lacerations, bite wounds, puncture, and soft tissue trauma — and a trip to the pet emergency room for you.
Snakebites, which are the most commonly reported injuries, may require anti-venom whereas scorpion stings may cause allergic reactions requiring antihistamines. Treatment may vary depending on the severity of the attack and costs can range from hundreds of dollars for bandages or stitches to thousands of dollars for surgery for damaged organs or broken limbs.
So what wild animals are stalking our pets? In Texas, I have heard about hawks that have scooped up small dogs and cats, leaving pet owners in the country extremely vigilant when their furry friends need to go out to relieve themselves.
But hawks don’t even make the list of wild animals that have been know to wreak havoc on our pets — a list compiled from Veterinary Pet Health Insurance’s (VPI) 50,000 claims last year. While animal attack claims came from all areas of the country, javelina and scorpion claims were exclusive to the state of Arizona. (I had no idea what a javelina was before seeing the photo. ) Just visit this link to VPI to read the story of Rincon, a German Short-haired pointer that was attacked by a Javalina. (It’s best to keep your pets on a leash when out on nature walks.)
Top 10 wild animals that most commonly attack pets:
8. Ground Hogs
Of course, the most important thing is to make sure pets are up-to-date on their rabies vaccine. It’s also helpful to know where the closest pet emergency rooms are located and what potentially dangerous wild animals live in your area. There is little chance I will run into a Javelina in South Texas, but I do have to be on the lookout for rattlesnakes, even if my pets are on a leash. Snakes like to cross the trails. And the closest pet emergency room to our favorite hiking area is 4.2 miles.