"Be aware of your surroundings when you're out there," said Winneshiek County Sheriff Leon Bohr.
"If you see something sickly, try not to touch it or approach it. You don't want to get bitten or scratched or that kind of thing. And then report it so that appropriate law enforcement can remove that sick animal or whatever it might be and deal with it that way," he added.
A spokesman for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) said coyotes are usually not seen in the daytime, and if one is, it usually means it is sick, hurt or startled.
According to the DNR, most coyotes or "predators" do not want to go near humans.
The DNR advises folks to stay calm if they come across a wild animal and move to a safe place as quickly as possible to call law enforcement officials.
Bohr also recommends people let friends or family members know before they leave for an outdoor excursion in case cell phone reception becomes spotty.
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