Cape homeowner warns others after wild animal kills pet


CAPE CORAL, Fla. Tracks still mark the area where a man says a wild animal ripped through his lanai and killed his cat two weeks ago.

Now Hank Appleton is on a crusade to raise awareness about the the danger to pets near his home in the southwest part of the city.

“I want people in the city to realize that there is an issue with this and it’s not going to go away,” Appleton said.

The wild animal, which Appleton believes was likely a coyote, punched its teeth through the lanai screen and tore a hole that allowed it to enter and go after the cat, named Jack, he said.

“The entire yard had flower pots and debris thrown everywhere, so whatever happened, Jack went out with a vengeance,” Appleton said.

Appleton has started a Facebook group called Jack’s Place to provide a forum for people to share photos and warn others about coyote sightings in the city.

He wants to spread the word about precautions that can keep pets safe.

“Well, No. 1 is to not feed animals outside of any kind,” Appleton said. “Try to keep (pets) indoors if at all possible. I’m trying to acclimate mine to do that a little bit more.”

Jack was likely trying to protect his sibling when the attack took place, Appleton believes.

“I was so stunned at first and then angry that my property was actually broken into by an animal that really doesn’t belong here,” he said. “And killed my animal and walked off with it like he owns the place.”


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