Earlier this week, a man running along a Colorado trail near Fort Collins was attacked by a cougar. As reported by ABC7, the man survived after he “killed the animal by choking it.” Here’s the segment:
Attacks by cougars—also known as mountain lions, pumas and panthers—are incredibly rare. (The story notes that just “sixteen people have been injured and three killed by cougars in Colorado since 1990.”) But when you’re in the mountainous western U.S., for example, it’s important to be respectful and exercise caution if you encounter wildlife.
Hopefully, you’ll never be in a position to accidentally trigger the hunting instincts of a cougar as the Colorado man did, and as the animals tend to avoid human contact, you’ll almost never have to react outside of possibly returning to a populated area and alerting a local official. That said, if you do see one in the wild, you should maintain eye contact and avoid turning your back to it, and you should employ these cougar safety tips offered by Western Wildlife Outreach. And don’t forget: As an absolute last resort, choking the animal has worked before (seems like it would take a lot of strength!).
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