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Illinois police department warns of infected coyotes confused as ‘zombie’ dogs

HANOVER PARK, Ill.  -- Police in a Chicago suburb are warning residents of infected coyotes that are being confused for stray dogs that make them look like “some sort of ‘zombie’ dog.”

The Hanover Park Police Department posted the warning on Wednesday saying there is an “increase in sarcoptic mange in the urban coyote populations,” which is causing the normally nocturnal coyotes come out during the day.

It makes the coyotes look like “malnourished or neglected stray dogs.”

“Infected animals will often appear ‘mangy’ -- which looks just like it sounds,” police said. “They suffer hair loss and develop secondary infections, eventually looking like some sort of 'zombie' dog.”

Police added the infected coyotes aren’t “typically aggressive,” but warned residents to avoid them and keep them away from their pets, because the mange is contagious to other canines.

Cook County officials said coyotes tend to avoid humans and that there hasn’t been a reported case of coyotes biting humans in northeastern Illinois.