Coyote’s Reaction to Squeaky Toy Delights Internet: ‘Barkour’

A coyote’s exuberance over a dog’s squeaky toy gave the internet a reason to smile on Tuesday.

A woman confined to her hospital bed captured the moment in a video that went viral on Reddit, quickly racking up 37,000 votes on the website’s “Aww” forum.

“Coyote found a squeaky toy I accidentally left outside,” said anonymous user u/Squanchinthepark in her caption. “Turns out coyote[s] love squeaky toys too.”

The footage showed the coyote seizing the toy in its mouth while running broad, gleeful circles around a garden outside the woman’s window. The animal’s minute-and-a-half of recorded play time was punctuated with leaps high into the air and head-spinning twirls—described by the woman as “Barkour.”

The woman watching her wild neighbor was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in January, she revealed in an earlier Reddit post. She confirmed a suspicion from one commenter who guessed her vantage point during the video.

“Hmm, stage 4 lung cancer 7 months ago. Must be confined to the medical wing,” wrote the viewer.

The patient replied, “It’s a bit rundown, but it has remarkable views of the menagerie.”

Other Reddit users cheered her on for capturing a moment that delighted thousands of internet users, all while enduring her illness.

Coyote Griffith Park
Here, a nursing mother coyote in Griffith Park in Los Angeles, California, in 2007. Although coyotes can attack people in rare circumstances, the animals are far more endangered by humans than the other way around.
David McNew / Staff/Getty Images North America

“Hopefully the coyote will keep coming and make /u/Squanchinthepark smile every day,” said a commenter.

“Oh this made my day to see,” gushed another. “It’s such a treat to see them so excited and happy all bounding around and having fun!”

Although coyotes are closely related to domesticated dogs—so much so that on rare occasions, they can breed with them—they may attack family pets. That’s because to a coyote, a free-roaming cat or small dog looks similar to a rabbit or a woodchuck, which are their normal prey, according to the Humane Society.

Those attacks have increased as coyotes have become the top carnivores in a growing number of metropolitan areas across North America, according to a report from the Cook County Coyote Project in Chicago, Illinois. Although they can attack people in rare circumstances, the animals are far more endangered by humans than the other way around.

Some die in wildlife killing contests, which award contestants for shooting the most coyotes the fastest. Federal agents kill, poison and trap coyotes to eradicate them from ranching areas. And as the coyote population grows in cities, urban hunters have made a sport out of killing them.

Newsweek reached out to u/Squanchinthepark for comment.

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