Coyotes! From news reports full of photos of small dogs that have presumably been savagely mauled by coyotes, to your friend's cousin's roommate who definitely saw one last month, it seems like coyotes are everywhere.
Well, the truth is that they probably are. In fact, coyotes in America are more plentiful today then they ever have been before, not least because killing coyotes causes the remaining females to increase their litter size. But more coyotes, even if they're in your neighborhood, is not necessarily a bad thing.
The reason coyotes do so well in cities is not because they eat cats and dogs. It's because they eat rats and trash and anything that won't be too hard to catch or put up too much of a fight. Most people that believe their dogs or cats were killed by coyotes only know that their pet disappeared and, having seen coyotes in the area, assume that these canids are the culprits. While this is sometimes true, predation is not a main cause of death for stray animals. But that is beside the point. If you watch your animal while it's outside and keep it inside the rest of the time, it will be safe from all predators, not just coyotes.
To be continued! With more info on why coyotes are actually pretty okay.