A family pet is expected to go through a long recovery after his owner says he was attacked by a cougar in northern Alberta.
Merlin Hallock said her two dogs were walking her 12-year-old daughter to the school bus one morning this week in Victor Lake, Alta.
After Hallock’s daughter got on the bus, a cougar attacked the two dogs, according to Hallock.
Hallock said she heard a “terrible noise” while she was inside her home, so she went outside where she saw one of her dogs being attacked by a large cougar.
She called her brother who lives nearby. He quickly arrived and shot the cougar as it was attacking one of the dogs, Jag, according to Hallock.
According to Hallock, the gunshot wounded the cougar but didn’t kill it, so her brother and a friend tracked the animal and killed it.
“Fish and Wildlife were informed shortly thereafter,” Hallock said.
The family dog was badly injured in the attack.
Family friend Nicole Dupuis drove Jag to a veterinarian in Edmonton.
“His cheekbone is shattered. He has large gashes through his face. They’re saying one or two surgeries to fix it and half a dozen if not more smaller surgeries to get it somewhat back to normal,” Dupuis said.
Dupuis and Hallock said there have been more cougar sightings than usual in the area as of late.
“When we did have the first little rash of cougar attacks, the kids weren’t even allowed to play outside, all the kids were sent into the schools, and basically no kids were walking home those days,” Dupuis said.
Hallock said the cost for Jag’s recovery will be between $4,000 and $6,000.
Friends have setup a GoFundMe account in hopes of getting donations to help pay for the cost.
Victor Lake is outside the town of Grand Cache, which is about 430 kilometres northwest of Edmonton.