While addressing a question many are asking, the Urban Caracal Project confirmed on their Facebook page that caracals are indeed afraid of dogs. The conservation organisation also urged locals to be more aware of the dangers their domestic animals can pose.
According to the Project, domestic animals cause a great deal of stress to wildlife in general and residents need to be more aware of this when they head out for a walk or run accompanied by their pet. Domestic animals often even kill caracals.
“Dogs chase, harass, attack, and even kill wildlife. They can also transmit deadly diseases such as canine distemper, even to wild cats like caracals! Caracals around Cape Town are no exception. Dog owners have regularly reported seeing a scared caracal after their dog chases it into a tree. We have also recorded several Cape Town caracals killed by domestic dogs. But even when dogs are well-behaved, they can still pass on their parasites and diseases to caracals,” said the caracal protection organisation on their Facebook page.
While locals can’t simply stop going out into nature with their furry friends, they are instead being asked to be responsible owners.
“We urge dog owners to keep their dogs on leads, particularly in nature reserves. Picking up after your dog while walking and vaccination are also important ways to reduce spread of parasites and disease. These actions will lower the impact of dogs on all wildlife in these areas,” says the Urban Caracal Project.
All animals have their space in our world and it is our responsibility to see to it that they are able to live in harmony and without unnecessary deaths.
So the next time you go out into nature with your best four-legged friend, remember that there are other animals out there that deserve to be respected.