Possible coyote follows doctor inside office in Mount Pleasant - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Possible coyote follows doctor inside office in Mount Pleasant

Source: Southeastern Spine Institute Source: Southeastern Spine Institute
Source: Southeastern Spine Institute Source: Southeastern Spine Institute
MOUNT PLESANT, SC (WCSC) -

Imagine walking into your workplace and having what you think is a coyote follow you inside.

That's what happened to a local doctor last week and it was caught on camera.

Dr. Steve Poletti is a spine surgeon at the Southeastern Spine Institute in Mount Pleasant. He walked into work through the employees only door and had no reason to look down or consider that he was being followed.

"I was just walking into work minding my own business," Poletti said.

He had no idea the animal was right on his heels, at first glance he thought it was a dog. 

"When it brushed by my leg and turned around you could see clearly it was a coyote or a wolf," Poletti said. "It kind of bared its teeth and started growling and right then I knew it was a coyote."

The  surveillance video shows Poletti walking through the door while the animal swiftly makes its way inside. The door nearly closes before Poletti runs back outside while being chased.

Coyote sightings aren't unusual for Mount Pleasant, the town has a coyote management plan. What's odd is the fact that it followed Dr. Poletti inside.

Wildlife Control Specialist with Animal Pros, Nathan Agee says that's not something that happens all the time. He also says coyotes are difficult to trap and he gets calls about sightings weekly.

"Because of the angle of the camera it's kind of hard to tell, it does have a slender body like a coyote would have," Agee said. "It seemed kind off color more creme color than gray which is typical for a coyote, but kind of hard to tell it had the ears and the body style."

Experts say dogs and coyotes can cross-breed, though it doesn't happen often.

Dr. Poletti says the door opens to an enclosed room with a staircase.

"I kind of put my hands up and jingled my keys and the coyote took a step back and basically I came back here and pushed the exit button and took a run for it," he said.

He says the animal followed him until it got distracted by a squirrel and then circled the building for about 10 minutes.

"First concern I had being a surgeon my thought was if the coyote bites me I would rather have him bite me in the leg," Poletti said.

Agee says there could be several different reasons why the animal chose to go inside.

"Maybe it was just looking for food, and in the case it was a dog it was just a lost dog and it was just trying to find a place to get away," Agee said.

The hope is that it won't come back.

"If a coyote can follow me into a building it makes you worry about what's next," Poletti said.

Dr. Poletti called the Mount Pleasant Police Department and animal control. He was advised that he would have to independently hire a trapper to catch the animal if he decided to go that route.

The Southeastern Spine Institute is in a residential and business area and there's also a school close by. Poletti's concern is for others who could be faced with a similar situation.

Copyright 2017 WCSC. All rights reserved. 

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