Wednesday, November 25, 2020
Mountain Lion Snatches Dog During Family Outing
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Adult mountain lions, or cougars, typically stand two to three feet tall at the shoulder. Females weigh 64 to 140 pounds and males 120 to 220 pounds. COURTESY: Idaho Fish and Game
   
Sunday, November 8, 2020
 

BY KAREN BOSSICK

A small dog on a family outing to a hot springs near Carey has presumably died following a mountain lion attack.

A family from southern Idaho was visiting the Wild Rose Hot Springs, which sits on private property along Highway 20 about 17 miles east of Carey. While in the hot springs with their small dogs nearby, the mountain lion grabbed one, taking it away.

The dog has not been found, said Terry Thompson, a spokesperson for Idaho Fish and Game.

The incident follows a slew of mountain dog attacks on family pets that have taken place from Ketchum to Hailey since December 2019. Mountain lions also have been spotted in Bellevue, Woodside and Gimlet.

Those who access the hot springs are encouraged to be vigilant and aware of their surroundings, especially during early morning and evening hours, said Thompson.

Mountain lions are typically shy animals and avoid people, but they are opportunistic predators who don’t know when their next meal will come from. Consequently, they will often perceive small animals or pets as potential prey and take that prey when it presents itself, he added.

If you encounter a lion:

* NEVER run away. The lion’s instinct is to chase and ultimately catch what they perceive as a potential prey. And they can run up to 50 miles per hour—chances are you can’t!

*  NEVER turn your back on a lion. Always face them while making yourself look as large as you can. Yell loudly, but don’t scream. A high-pitched scream may mimic the sound of a wounded animal.

* SLOWLY back away while maintaining eye contact with the lion.

* Consider carrying bear spray and an air horn or other noise device. If you walk in the dark, take along a very bright flashlight.

*  If you are attacked, fight back!

* Keep pets on a leash at dusk or dark and watch the pets’ behavior since they may sense the lion before you see them.

* Use all of your senses to detect if a mountain lion is near. Ditch the headphones you might use while running or biking, as they take away your ability to hear if a lion, or any other wildlife, is giving you signals that you’re too close.

* Report any mountain lion incident that results in an attack to the Magic Valley Regional Office at (208) 324-4359 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday – Friday. After hours, call the Citizens Against Poaching (CAP) hotline at 1-800-632-5999.

* Report mountain lion sightings and observations to the Fish and Game, Magic Valley Regional Office at (208) 324-4359.

 

 

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