WHEATON, Ill. (AP) — A suburban Chicago police department is urging residents to be vigilant about their pets, saying they've fielded more reports of coyote attacks on small dogs.

Wheaton police say an officer saw a coyote snatch a small, unleashed dog on Nov. 27.

On Sunday a small dog had to be euthanized after it was attacked by a coyote in a fenced yard. In another incident, two coyotes ran off with a dog that was outside a home.

Police say the cases underscore the need for pets to be leashed, and that fences don't guarantee a pet's safety.

Authorities say coyotes are more visible now as food becomes scarcer and young coyotes leave their families.

Anyone encountering a coyote should shout, clap, run toward it or throw something in its direction.