A 78-year-old man fought back when he was attacked by a “vicious” squirrel outside his southeast Louisiana home, authorities say.
The man suffered “significant” injuries in the tussle on Tuesday, April 26, when the squirrel “came from the direction of his roof and attacked him (unprovoked),” according to the Slidell Police Department.
It was “eating his hand,” a caller reported to police, and the man was seen struggling with the squirrel when first responders arrived.
“The man was attempting to choke the squirrel, but was unable to obtain a good grip,” the department said in a written statement. “The squirrel was eventually subdued and died as a result of its injuries.”
There’s no indication the squirrel was rabid, and police said it’s possible the critter was protecting a nest, a department spokesperson told McClatchy News. It marks the second reported squirrel attack in Slidell this year, according to police.
With the help of first responders, the squirrel was killed and the elderly man hospitalized with what Slidell PD called pretty significant injuries.
The man, who wasn’t publicly identified, is expected to be OK.
Slidell PD says experts say it is very rare for squirrels to attack people but it has been known to happen.
“A diseased squirrel may be more likely to show aggressive or hostile behavior towards human beings. However, when a squirrel does attack, it is not always possible to determine why,” said the Slidell Police Department in report.
This is the second reported squirrel attack in Slidell, this year. The first occurred in February, during a Mardi Gras parade.
Slidell is about 30 miles northeast of downtown New Orleans.