The following was released by the Idaho Department of Fish & Game reference an incident in the foothills just north of the City of Boise. Fish & Game Southwest Region: (208) 466-8465
Mountain Lion Injures Dogs in Boise Foothills
Hikers, runners and mountain bikers are urged to use caution in an area of the Boise Foothills where two dogs were attacked by a mountain lion Monday afternoon.
The attack took place off of Bogus Basin Road, along the Corrals Trail, just west of the Corrals/Hard Guy Trail junction around 2:00pm Monday. A Boise man, in his mid- to late-20s, was riding his mountain bike with his two dogs – a 45-lb husky mix and a 45-lb pit bull terrier mix – trailing off leash behind him when he heard a yelp. The pet owner says he turned around to see a mountain lion spring from the brush and attack one of the dogs. The quick-thinking owner acted aggressively toward the cat, pelting it with rocks and yelling loudly in hopes of scaring the animal away. Rather than run, the cat attacked the second dog.
The man said he threw a larger rock, striking the lion in the head, stunning the animal. That gave the dog owner time to pick up one of his pets and ride down the trail to his vehicle where he found the second dog waiting for him. The man immediately called 911 dispatchers to report the attack. Both dogs suffered injuries but are expected to make a full recovery.
The mountain lion has not been found.
Fish and Game officers and Ada County Sheriff’s deputies responded immediately, secured the attack location and collected evidence at the scene. “In years past, we’ve had lion attacks on domestic pets in the foothills and taken no action against the offending cat,” Fish and Game conservation educator Evin Oneale said. “But this situation is different. When the man approached the cat, it did not react normally; it stood its ground and did not run off as we would expect.”
The mountain lion was described by the dog owner as “emaciated” which would suggest the cat may be having trouble hunting effectively. “Based on those issues, Fish and Game officers made the decision to remove the animal when it was located,” Oneale said.
At about 4:30 pm, a houndsman and his tracking dogs arrived, with the dogs quickly picking up the cat’s scent. “We tracked the animal for more than one half mile and well after dark before the dogs lost the scent,” Fish and Game officer Bill London commented. The search was called off around 8:30pm.
The search will not continue unless the mountain lion is spotted again. “Having lost the scent Monday evening, any new search would be starting from scratch, with minimal chance of striking the cat’s trail again,” London said.
Warning signs were posted at the Corrals and Miller Gulch Trailheads to alert people to the mountain lion sighting. Dog owners are urged to keep all pets on a leash in that area. Anyone seeing a mountain lion should immediately report the sighting by calling Ada County Sheriff’s non-emergency dispatch at 208-377-6790. Lion sightings can also be reported to the Fish and Game Southwest Region Office in Nampa at 208-465-8465.
NR2014/Mt. Lion Attack.doc