BRITISH COLUMBIA

Cougar that attacked woman in her home is now dead

08/28/2012 03:51 EDT | Updated 10/28/2012 05:12 EDT
TRAIL, B.C. - A starving cougar that walked into the home of a woman and attacked her while she sat in her living room is now dead.

"The woman was in her house with a number of puppies when the cougar walked in through an open door and attacked her on the sofa," Trail RCMP Sgt. Rob Hawton said of the weekend incident.

With the help of her dog, the woman fought the cougar off and chased it out of the house. She received a couple of minor injuries to her upper leg from the cougar's claws.

The cougar was gone by the time police arrived. But the animal was tracked down and destroyed Monday.

Hawton said the cougar was gone before officers arrived and a subsequent search was not successful. B.C. Conservation officers were called in and the cougar was tracked down and destroyed Monday.

"This is an extremely rare occurrence and was driven by the animal's desperation for food," Hawton said.

The cougar is believed to have been too weak from starvation to hunt normally.

Earlier this month, the president of the Trail Wildlife Association, Terry Hanik, raised the alarm of a rise in predators in the region.

Hanik said cougars and wolves were pushing into the area, adding their numbers to the huge number of coyotes already plaguing the back country and eroding the deer population, forcing predators to look into more settled areas where deer have been thriving for years. (Trail Times)