A dad has been dubbed a hero after kicking a mountain lion in its head in order to save his daughter’s dog from its jaws.
Ian Orser, a plumber from Grand Forks in British Columbia, had been with his daughter and their three dogs at a job site when he heard a “dog yowling and a cat screeching,” Global News reported.
The two followed the noise to find that a mountain lion had one of the dogs—a Shephard-cross called Red—by the head, and was dragging it across a driveway. Orser ran to the mountain lion and began kicking it in the head.
Eventually, the big cat let go of the dog. “He looked at me, he didn’t attack me or anything, I grabbed a stick and started shaking the stick around, beating the ground, looking as big as I could and he sort of sauntered away,” he told Global News.
While mountain lion attacks are rare, experts usually recommend staying calm and never running away from the predator.
Orser said that during the ordeal, he was worried about the dog’s safety, adding it was “pretty scary” as his daughter was there too. Following the attack, Orser spotted the mountain lion again and tried to go after it with his truck, however, he could not keep up with it.
Megan Orser said that her dad is a “hero” for saving her dog’s life. “He’s very brave,” she told Global News.
There are around 4,000 mountain lions in British Columbia. The animals are usually fearful of people and shy, however, hunger caused by a lack of prey in their habitat can sometimes force them to wander into populated neighborhoods looking for food.
British Columbia Conservation officers later tracked down the male mountain lion to find it emaciated. Officers took the decision to euthanize the animal.
Mountain lions prefer to eat deer and other small rodents, and only usually attack dogs when they are in desperate need of food.
Following the attack, Orser and Megan took the dog to the vet, where it received 20 stitches on its neck, back, legs, and chest, Global News reported. The dog is on medication to help with her injuries.
Mountain lions are known to attack small dogs if the opportunity arises. In March, a woman in British Colombia successfully rescued her 14-pound Yorkie after it was attacked by a mountain lion during a walk near British Columbia’s Port Hardy. The mountain lion attempted to jump into a tree with the dog but was not successful.