A 5-year-old boy was “savagely attacked” by a mountain lion that attacked him without provocation while the boy was hiking with his family in California on Tuesday night, authorities said.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife said the boy, identified by a relative only as Jake, could have died from his injuries if his mother had not taken him to safety from the attack in San Mateo County.
The incident happened around 6:50 p.m. in the 1000 block of Tonets Creek Road near Half Moon Bay, where the 5-year-old was enjoying a hike with his mother and grandfather near their farm. KTVU reported..
Fish and Wildlife officials said the mountain lion, possibly a cub, suddenly appeared and pushed Jack to the ground, where the animal proceeded to maul him in the face.
The boy’s mother intervened and fought the animal, which eventually ran away.
“This mountain lion chose the wrong baby and mama,” Jack’s aunt, Amy Wagner, wrote on the GoFundMe page.
Jack was conscious when he was taken to a trauma center for treatment of puncture wounds and other injuries.
“Jack has a lot of bruises, especially on his precious face, in addition to a fracture near one eye,” his aunt revealed. “He is covered in cuts, bruises and scratches but his spirit is intact.”
“I’m not surprised that if there was a kid who wrestled a mountain lion to the top, it would be Jack,” he added.
Wagner was asking for donations to help the family with Jack’s medical expenses. She said her parents run a program on their farm to help homeless people and disadvantaged students.
Fish and Wildlife investigators will collect DNA samples from Jack’s clothing and try to identify the mountain lion that attacked him.
If the animal is tracked and caught, it will be removed from the forest.
Mountain lions rarely attack humans. According to the Department of Fish and Wildlife, California has had about 20 confirmed attacks in more than a century of record keeping.
Last September, a 7-year-old boy was mauled by a mountain lion during an evening walk with his father in a park near Santa Clarita in Southern California. The father scared off the animal, and the child was treated for relatively minor injuries.
With post wires
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