Doctor says coyote followed him into work

A South Carolina surgeon kept his cool during a close encounter with what he believes was a coyote — inside the building where he works.

A security camera caught the moment Wednesday morning when Dr. Steven Polleti walked through the door for employees at the Southeastern Spine Institute in Mount Pleasant. The cameras also revealed an unwanted visitor — slender, cream in color with gray on its tail — walking in right behind him.

The space inside the door is small and there’s no way out except for a staircase, Polleti said. He got a good look at the animal and was pretty sure what he was dealing with.

“I feel like I know a coyote when I see one,” he said.

“I was a little bit surprised, put my hands up, shook my keys,” Polleti said. The animal “growled at me in a way that I would describe as a flight response. He was probably as scared as I was,” he added.

‘Troublesome’ encounters uncommon

The video shows Poletti running out the same door — followed once again by the coyote. The surgeon said the animal had taken a step back, giving him a chance to push the door open and make a run for it.

The animal followed Polleti for about 10 feet before getting distracted by a squirrel. The doctor called the police and animal control.

Coyotes sightings are common in the Mount Pleasant area, said Michael Stanley, a dispatcher supervisor in Mount Pleasant — but he said that this type of “troublesome” encounter is not.

Animal control specialist Nathan Agee told CNN affiliate WCSC that it was hard to be certain if the animal was a coyote from the camera angle but, he added, “it had the ears and the body style.”

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