Tofino issues warning after dog reportedly killed by wolves at popular beach.
Sunday, September 2, 2018, 5:30 PM – The District of Tofino is asking pet owners to keep their animals on leash and bring them indoors at night after a dog died from a suspected wolf attack at Chesterman Beach on Saturday.
Bob Hansen, with WildSafeBC Pacific Rim says the dog, which he described as medium-sized, was killed at Middle Chesterman Beach in the early morning.
The dog was wandering alone without its owner, Hansen said. Judging from tracks at the site, it appears that multiple wolves attacked it.
“[I] can’t say for sure if it was more than one wolf, but certainly the tracks indicated that it was a wolf,” he said.
Chesterman Beach is one of Tofino’s most popular beaches, known for its expanse of sand, good walking and surfing.
Tofino Mayor Josie Osborne says wolf and dog conflicts aren’t uncommon in the area.
“We know that we live with wildlife amongst us and we certainly co-exist with wolves, cougars, bears,” she said “And unfortunately these things do happen from time to time.”
She and Hansen both stress the importance of keeping pets on a leash to avoid encounters.
“Wolves are very rarely known to attack humans but they will go for loose dogs especially,” she said.
Hansen said caution signs are being posted around the district.
In March, 2017 Wickaninnish Beach near Ucluelet, B.C. was closed after a series of wolf attacks.
In June, 2016 a wolf warning was issued for Pacific Rim National Park Reserve near Tofino, B.C. after two wolf encounters in the Green Point campground involving pets and their owners and campers.
People who do come in contact with wildlife are advised to make noise and act big, according to a section on park reserve’s website. They’re also advised not to run away.