A coyote’s exuberance at a dog’s squeaky toy gave the internet a reason to smile on Tuesday.
A woman confined to her hospital bed captured the moment in a video which went viral on Reddit, quickly racking up 37,000 votes on the website’s “Aww” forum.
“Coyote found a squeaky toy that I accidentally left outside,” anonymous user u/Squanchinthepark said in their caption. “It turns out that the coyote[s] also loves squeaky toys.”
Footage showed the coyote grabbing the toy in its mouth while running in wide, happy circles around a garden outside the woman’s window. The animal’s minute and a half of recorded playing time was punctuated with leaps through the air and dizzying whirls, described by the woman as “Barkour”.
The woman who watched her wild neighbor was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in January, she revealed in a previous Reddit Publish. She confirmed a suspicion from a commentator who guessed her point during the video.
“Hmm, stage 4 lung cancer 7 months ago. Must be confined to medical wing,” the viewer wrote.
The patient replied, “It’s a bit run down, but there are some great views of the menagerie.
Other Reddit users applauded her for capturing a moment that delighted thousands, while enduring her illness.
“I hope the coyote keeps coming and making /u/Squanchinthepark smile every day,” one commenter said.
“Oh that made my day to see,” gushed another. “It’s such a pleasure to see them so excited and happy jumping around and having fun!”
Although coyotes are closely related to domestic dogs – so much so that on rare occasions they can breed with them – they can attack domestic animals. Indeed, to a coyote, a loose cat or small dog looks like a rabbit or groundhog, which are their normal prey, according to the Humane Society.
These attacks have increased as coyotes have become the primary carnivores in a growing number of North American metropolitan areas, according to a report from the Cook County Coyote Project in Chicago, Illinois. Although they can attack people in rare circumstances, animals are much more threatened by humans than the other way around.
Some die in wild animal killing contests, which reward competitors for taking down the most coyotes in the fastest time. Federal agents kill, poison and trap coyotes to eradicate them from breeding areas. And as the coyote population grows in cities, urban hunters have made it a sport.
Newsweek contacted u/Squanchinthepark for comment.