Chicago coyote bites lead to 2 hospitalizations in 1 day

A 5-year-old boy and 32-year-old man have been hospitalized after suffering coyote bites in Chicago, NBC News reports.

The boy, bitten multiple times Jan. 8 by a coyote in Lincoln Park, is in stable condition, according to a police statement. Shortly after the first attack, police said a man was walking in downtown Chicago when a coyote bit him from behind. The victim was hospitalized and is said to be in good condition.

Coyotes are following the Chicago River in search of food, local experts told NBC Chicago, adding that coyotes are becoming more aggressive because they can't find food.

There are about 4,000 coyotes in Cook County, Ill., Stanley Gehrt, PhD, a professor of wildlife ecology at Columbus-based Ohio State University, told Chicago's public TV station WTTW. He added that the animals' population has grown because they cannot legally be hunted in the city. 

"Once they learn how to cross roads and avoid cars — the only real threat to them — they do extremely well in the city, much better than out in the country," Dr. Ghert told WTTW.

Residents should keep dogs on short leashes and try not to leave garbage out near their homes, experts told NBC Chicago. 

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