Presumed coyote attack on 83-year-old woman's dog prompts warnings in Seffner

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A Seffner woman is recovering after being bitten by a coyote while walking her dog in Seffner.

Wednesday, 83-year-old Olga Colon was out for a walk with her Chihuahua on King William Circle.

Suddenly, something hit her and she was on the ground. She grabbed her dog and held on.

But she couldn't stop the coyote from running off with Pinky, as well as part of one of her own fingers.

"It was a pretty big coyote, and kind of tough," said through a translator.

FWC can't immediately confirm it was a coyote, but they are reacting as if it was. Because the bite happened next to Seffner Elementary, extra patrols are out before and after school.

Colon's niece and nephew, Daphny and Juan Camacho spoke to FOX 13 News about the ordeal.

"She wants to tell people that they need to be aware of the dangers that lurk in that neighborhood," Daphne said. "If she didn't have that heavy winter coat, she would have sustained way more injuries."

They said their aunt loved Pinky.

"She tried to save the dog," Juan said. "Trying to save him, the coyote chewed her finger off."

While coyotes are in every area of Florida, FWC says there are very few attacks on people. Most happen to unleashed dogs and cats. Pinky, however, was on a leash.

In October, four dogs were killed in a backyard in Bradenton, and St. Pete police warned the public after numerous sightings.

Colon said she had never seen one before.

"She says she will never again walk around her neighborhood," said Daphne.

Colon had surgery to reattach her finger. Barring an infection, her family believes she will regain its use. 

"She doesn't even want to have another dog because of all the pictures she has in her head, because of losing her pet," said Daphne. "Imagine how traumatizing it is to have your own animal ripped out of your hands."