Where we had set up our blind.
My grandson Jordan and I, (he is twelve years old), were traveling home the other day from a hunt along the Pearl River, where we were hunting deer and possibly a hog if the opportunity presented itself. I told Jordan that I had a new nickname for him, and he said, “what is it paw-paw?” I said, “Dog Bait!!” Jordan said, “Dog Bait!!! Paw-Paw you know that dog was running right at me!! How was I dog bait??” Jordan was right, how was he dog bait?
In our state as well as many other states in the United States, the genetic defintion of Coydogs / dogotes is actually a hybrid not a subspecies. They are not triploid so the offsrping technically are fertile but typically not as much so as either parent species, which are a result of coyote and domestic dog breeding. Some people actually have taken female coyotes and bread them to a male dogs and that is called “Dogote”. This is a hybrid of coyote and dog that are really mean. When the coyote breeds with a dog, many times the “Coydog” has lost its fear of man. I had a friend of mine who was held in his tree stand while bow hunting til 9:00pm in the evening, before he could get down from a pack of coydogs. He called a few friends on his cell phone to come and help him and when they drove up on their four wheelers, the Coydogs took off. One of the coydogs, lay dead at the bottom of the tree with an arrow through it. Now even though he killed one of them just before dark when he could still see his sights, the other coydogs still stayed there and did not run off. They took the dog to the state biologist and he confirmed it was a coyote and dog mix.
Here is a picture of a coydog although they can be many different colors.
It was a beautiful morning that day as Jordan and I reached the cyprus bottom to set up our blind and begin our hunt. We were there for about two and a half hours till the cloud cover broke up and it got really hot. The mosquitos were tearing us up, so we decided to leave. It was about a fifteen-minute walk back to our four-wheeler. Every thing seemed fine as we were walking along and enjoying our conversation and all the beauty of the woods we were hunting in. When we reached the four-wheeler, I took Jordan’s rifle and removed his clip and moved around to the front of the four-wheeler where our rifle cases were sitting. I put his rifle up and began to unload my 358Win Ruger Hawkeye, when all of a sudden from the back of the four-wheeler Jordan said in a very concerned and elevated tone, “Paw-Paw, look!!” As I looked up over my opened rifle case, to my horror and surprise were two big dogs in a full run going straight for Jordan.
I had already unloaded my rifle and my rounds were sitting in the open gun case. I reached for a round and pushed it into my magazine while bolting and at the same time stepping out to the left to clear Jordan, and threw up to shoot. As I stepped out the dogs noticed me for the first time and at the moment I fired, the lead dog was changing direction and I hit it in the hip, it started howling as I reached in the case for another round and fired again putting it out of it’s misery. The second dog had run off a ways and stopped to look back but buy the time I reached for another round it was gone in a large ticket.
What was so chilling was the fact that they were in a full run going straight for my grandson. They didn’t notice me on the other end of the four-wheeler since my gun case was open with the back side up in the air and Jordan was standing at the back of the vehicle also blocking my image. After we both walked over and stared at the dog for a little while, Jordan looked up into my eyes and said, “Paw-Paw, I was afraid, those dogs were coming straight at me like they were attacking me!” That is exactly what they were doing, they saw an opportunity and Jordan is not a big kid yet, since he has not reached puberty. I can’t tell you the anger I felt as I stood there looking at that coydog. I just wish I had not unloaded my rifle at that moment because I would have taken that other dog also. Jordan was dog bait that day because he was not a big person and those dogs saw an opportunity. Keep your young hunters with you when in the woods and do not let them get out of your sight, or they could just end up being dog bait or some other kind of bait.