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3 dogs attacked, 1 fatally, by mountain lions in Grand Lake

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is urging dog owners to take precautions to protect their pets from mountain lion attacks.

GRAND LAKE, Colo. — State wildlife officials are warning Grand Lake residents of increased mountain lion activity after three recent attacks on dogs, one of them fatal. 

Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) said the first incident happened on Dec. 19. CPW said a dog owner heard her dog make a noise after letting it outside. While opening the door to see what was going on, she hit a mountain lion with the door. That caused the mountain lion to drop the dog and run off. The dog was injured but survived. 

The second attack was on Jan. 19. CPW said a mountain lion killed a dog as it and its owner were returning from a walk. The dog was off leash, CPW said, walking closely behind its owner, when a mountain lion grabbed it from under a porch. The dog was killed. 

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After attempts to scare off the mountain lion failed, CPW said the dog owner's husband shot and killed it. A wildlife officer determined there was a threat to human health and safety, so he was not ticketed. 

The most recent attack happened on the morning of Jan. 23. CPW said the dog and its owner were coming home from a walk when a mountain lion lunged, grabbing the dog off the porch steps. The dog's owner managed to scare the mountain lion, getting it to let go of the dog and run off. The injured dog was treated by a veterinarian. 

After that attack, wildlife officers tracked down the mountain lion by following tracks in the snow and euthanized it because they had again determined there was a threat to human health and safety. 

“These are unfortunate situations,” CPW Area Wildlife Manager Jeromy Huntington said in a statement. “Incidents like these serve as a good reminder that we live in mountain lion country and being aware of our surroundings is important.”

CPW is urging dog owners to take precautions to protect their pets from mountain lions, such as keeping their dogs leashed while outside. CPW also recommends checking the area before letting your pet out and making your presence known by turning lights on and making noise before letting your pet out. 

It's also important to talk to your children about mountain lions and teach them to be SMART if they ever encounter one, CPW said:

S- Stop. Do not run!
M- Make yourself look big.
A- Announce your presence in an authoritative voice: “LEAVE ME ALONE, LION!”
R- Retreat by backing away slowly.
T- Tell an adult about the encounter.

To report a mountain lion sighting or encounter in Grand and Summit counties, contact the Hot Sulphur Springs CPW office at 970-725-6200. For after-hours wildlife emergencies, you can also contact the Colorado State Patrol at 970-824-6501 and they will forward your report on to wildlife officers.

Those who live outside Grand and Summit counties can contact their local CPW office.  

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