Ever since my family moved to Pecatonica a few months ago, seeing wildlife has become a more frequent part of my day, and especially my morning commute to work. I love animals, so I usually enjoy seeing deer along the road or hearing coyotes howling in the distance, until I stumble across a post like this on social media...

Holy. Smokes. Coyotes will lure my dogs to where their pack waits in the distance to attack them?!? I am now terrified for my little fur babies, and not so appreciative of the coyote howls I hear in the distance!!!!

Now, the rescue that posted the above information may not be located in Illinois, but we all know coyotes have a big presence here in the Stateline, AND their mating season is almost here.

What You Need to Know About Coyote Mating Season

Typically coyotes start mating in mid-January and the activity usually peaks in late-February, early March. Babies usually come in the Spring, and that means for the next several weeks, coyote activity will become more apparent AND aggressive.

Westchesterwildlife.com says;

Coyotes can become more dangerous during their breeding season as the males will want to protect their territory from other males. Also, female coyotes will protect their pups and make sure they are not seen by any predators, thus they can get dangerous in some circumstances.

During this time of year, coyotes will pose a major risk to smaller pets, and the risk increases even more during their mating season.

Luckily there are a few things we can do to keep coyotes from snacking on our pets and out of our yards this winter. We can of course put up a fence, but remember, coyotes have been known to climb or jump over chain-link fences, so a tall wood one might be best. (We have one of those, thank goodness). Secondly, do not let your pets roam loose if you know there is a coyote presence in your neighborhood. Thirdly, and this is the most important one, DO NOT FEED COYOTES! Don't leave garbage or pet food out where a coyote could be tempted to scavenge it or assume it is an open invitation to lunch.

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LOOK: Here are the pets banned in each state

Because the regulation of exotic animals is left to states, some organizations, including The Humane Society of the United States, advocate for federal, standardized legislation that would ban owning large cats, bears, primates, and large poisonous snakes as pets.

Read on to see which pets are banned in your home state, as well as across the nation.