Rome residents have been voicing their concerns about their pets, after some were killed by an unknown predator. Now, an image has captured what many Rome residents say they've seen: a coyote.

One Facebook user and Rome resident describes what's been happening: mom has two cats missing, in the School of The Deaf area. And there are a few more in the area that said their cats are gone too. I heard that over near Denti they have seen it with cats in its mouth too.

This same person (who wishes to remain anonymous) provided an image taken by her outdoor security camera:

She estimates that the animal is "3.5 to 4 feet long from snout to flank".

Some have suggested that the animal in the image above is actually a fox, but the property-owner says that based on the other objects in the picture, she is certain it's too large to be a fox. She's 100% convinced that the image above is a coyote.

Here's another look at the animal:

Credit: R.B. via Facebook

Another Rome resident provided us with video (that they prefer to keep confidential) that clearly shows a coyote walking past homes and vehicles in West Rome.

How Can You Protect Your Pet?

According to The Humane Society of the United States, the best way to protect cats and dogs from coyote attacks is to not leave them outside unattended.

To help protect feral cats, The Humane Society recommends the following:

  • Feed cats only during the day and at a set time—and pick up any leftovers immediately
  • In treeless or open areas, erect "cat posts"—long pieces of wood (four inches by four inches or corner posts) that stand out of the ground at least ten to twelve feet. These can be climbed by cats but not by coyotes
  • Elevate feeding stations beyond coyotes’—but not the cats’—reach

It's terrible when pets - or any harmless animal - is hurt or killed by another animal. Take as many of these steps as you can to protect your pets.