Hawks rarely attack humans are quite rare, but they do attack pets including dogs. Quite unfortunate that a lot of people are not aware of this, till it’s too late. It is on record that birds of prey even attack dogs that weigh up to 60 pounds. However, it may not lead to the dog’s death but you need to take adequate precautions.
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For this reason, any pet that weighs less than 20 pounds is at grave risk of attack from raptors. Most especially the ones that attack birds, rabbits, and insects. Hawks take the opportunity of almost all the pets including guinea pigs, ducks, puppies, and chickens. And because they are quite possessive of their nests, they attack some large dogs or humans who they perceive as a trespasser.
The Birds That Are Threats To Pets
• The great horned owl is one of the common birds that attack pets. They are everywhere, in the cities and suburbs and they are quite recognizable. These owls are big and aggressive birds, they camouflage well and move silently. Although they are nocturnal creatures, they can be active in the winter during the day.
• The northern goshawk is also a common threat to pets. You can see them everywhere, across the northern regions, Canada and Alaska. They usually kind in forests with old-growth and would build their nests on large trees that are close to the river. These birds are quite beautiful and falconers value them a lot. They are also very aggressive.
• The red-tailed hawk has a notorious reputation. This hawk is very popular and you will see them across the Continental US and a large part of Canada. The major reason for being so familiar is because they are very adaptable. They do well in deserts, forests, marshes, and suburban parts of the country.
The other birds of prey include Cooper’s hawk, barred owl, and sharp-skinned hawk.
How To Protect Your Dogs And Other Pet Animals From Attacks
• Firstly, you need to know that it is very important that you stay with your pets when they are outdoors. For you to effectively deter these raptors, they need to see you either your dog, so you must be visible. These birds will typically leave your dog and other pets alone when they can see you close to them.
• If you are unable to stay outside with your dog, you can also keep them safe by keeping them in a covered play area. While the roof will serve as shade from the sun rays, and rain, the fencing will keep your dog safe from any other form of attack.
You can purchase a pet playpen so that when your dog plays outside they are safe. You can cover it permanently or temporarily.
• If a fenced and covered run is out of the question, keep your dog under the canopy of a tree or near shrubs, which makes it harder for the bird to attack.
• If you can, you may take more than one dog for exercise or a bathroom break at a time. If these birds sight more animals, it scares them.
• You can see a shining or moving figure in your yard. It can be a silver streamer, it will intimidate these birds.
• If you see a bird of prey attacking songbirds by your feeder, stop by feeding the birds for some moments, they would move to another place.
• Also, make sure that you don’t feed the birds that eat from the ground, examples are quails and roadrunners. Feeding them like this attacks these hunter birds.
• Feed your pet indoors and clean up any leftover food that might attract mice, squirrels, or rats, frequent targets of predators.
• Wear talon-proof vests for your dog if you must go for outdoor activity.
- Try to stay away from areas that are known to have raptors if you are going outdoor with your dog.
Clean up your yard. When you have debris on your property, it permits mice, rats, frogs, and other rodents to hide there. The presence of these animals will make your yard a hunting ground for hawks.
Prune tree branches to reduce the chances of perching. Look out for the areas in your yard that your dog likes to play then prune the branches of the trees in that area if any.
If you have bird feeders, you can take them away so that they don’t attract raptors. Feedees attract rodents and small birds which are in turn prey for larger birds.
Ensure that your dog wears a non-retractable leash when you go out for walks. The retractable leashes do not allow your dog to stray too far from you.
How To Scare Hawks Away
Just like other predators, hawks and owls are prefer to avoid any trace of danger. Not only for the prominent dangerous things, like hunters and other predators. They may be scared of odd and unfamiliar objects.
So, there are a few ways you can scare them or away. However, you may have to try different methods and products before you find the one that will do the trick.
Some of the best products that can scare these Hawks away includes:
1. SCARE TAPES
There is no proven reason yet, but metallic takes greatly scares the Hawks away.
Metal tapes are probably frightening because they have much light reflection and they make strange sounds when they blow in the wind. So, you just have to hang long strips of these tapes on trees, or the fences of your yard in areas that you want and that’s it.
You will find a lot of reflective, bird-frightening tapes on the market, but the Predator Guard Scare Tape is the best option available. The 2-inch-wide tape has 150-foot rolls, which can cover about 4,000 square feet.
2. BIRD SPIKES
Bird spikes have a variety of styles, you will find them in a lot of different materials. However, they have the same purpose and function the same way. It is difficult for birds to be comfortable when they perch on them.
There are a lot of companies that produce bird spikes, but let’s choose those that work well.
Abco Tech Bird Spikes are plastic and they have relatively short spikes that don’t rust as you use them. You will find them in 19 inches strips that you can mount easily in different forms. You may keep them in 19 lace with screws, glue, or zip ties.
Then we have the Bird-X Bird Spikes with larger spikes and made with iron. They are more effective for larger birds.
Pros Both types of spikes are easy to mount and affordable.
3. Scarecrow Owls
Scarecrow owls made with plastic to appear like owls and they would not allow rodents to come near your yard. As a result, they help keep birds of prey farther from you.
The Gardeneer By Dalen is the best one you will find in the market. This scarecrow owl is hand-painted to look very real. It also features a rotating head that moves when the wind blows. The owl is about 18-inches in height and you can mount it in several ways.
4. Bird Balloons
Bird balloons are very large inflatable beach balls. But they paint them to look like big birds that appear frightening to small birds and other animals. You can put them on your fence for easy spotting.
5. Hawk-Proof Netting
Like poultry farmers using wire or netting to protect their chickens and other birds from raptors, dog owners may also use the same strategy. It is quite a laborious activity, but it will provide the needed protection.
You can use either Yardgard or Noa Store Netting.
Yardgard is a good choice if you prefer metal wire, while Noa Store Netting is the perfect option for people who want a textile-based net.
6. Raptor-Proof Dog Vests.
When your dog is out, they are no longer protected with whatever means of safety you provided for them at home. That’s where raptor-proof vests are essential.
2. Hawk Shield
This is a product designed to protect small dogs from raptor attacks.
This product is an add-on product that is designed to be used in conjunction with the original Coyote Vest. It is made from a triple layer of Kevlar (the same material used in bullet- and knife-proof vests), and it attaches to the Coyote Vest via Velcro strips.
The Hawk Shield then works in two ways: First of all, the Kevlar material inside the guard helps protect your dog from the sharp talons of a hawk.
Secondly, Hawk Shield is designed to tear away from the Coyote Vest when the hawk grips it. This way, the hawk gets to fly away with the Hawk Shield, and your frightened pup can then run away.
Hawk Shield is available in four different sizes that are designed to fit whichever Coyote Vest is appropriate for your dog.
but you must use it in addition to Coyote Shield. This makes it expensive to cover your dog.
Birds of prey, like eagles, hawks, falcons, and owls, have great eyesight and can strike their prey quickly. Although they hunt smaller birds, snakes, and rodents they can come for your small dog as well. So, ensure that your yard is safe for your dog as much as possible. When you are outdoors protect them as well. Also, be prepared to take due whenever they attack your dog.
However, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Supervise your small dogs when outdoors and try to use the techniques or some of the products that we have mentioned above.