Conservation officers issue warning after wolf approaches woman

PRINCE RUPERT, B.C. — Conservation officers are warning of a "significant increase" in wolf activity around Prince Rupert, B.C.

The Conservation Officer Service says it has received several reports of dogs and cats being attacked over the last few weeks and other pets have gone missing.

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While there have been no attacks on humans, one woman reported a wolf approached while she was pushing her child in a stroller and the animal left when she kicked at it.

Officers say most wolves have been spotted at night or in the early morning near the golf course and ferry terminal.

WildSafeBC, a group dedicated to preventing conflict with wildlife, says there are about 8,500 wolves in the province and they account for about 400 calls to the Conservation Officer Service a year.

It says wolf attacks on humans are very rare but attacks on dogs are quite common, so it's important to keep dogs on a leash in wolf country.

If you encounter a wolf showing aggressive behaviour and it begins to approach you, the organization says bear spray may be used or it recommends throwing rocks, yelling and making yourself appear big.

Sightings should be reported as soon as possible to 1-877-952-7277.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 22, 2020.

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