Black bear attacks family dog in Pennsylvania backyard

As homes expand ever outward from the city, the chances of encountering a wild animal increases. When homeowners live within close proximity of the habitats of these wild animals, it is only a matter of time before a pet comes in contact with one, sometimes with disastrous effect, as demonstrated in the story below.

Sig, the German shepherd, is attacked

Source: Penn Live

A German shepherd, named Sig was attacked in the backyard of the home he lives in. The dog is lucky to be alive after a black bear found its way into the backyard and grabbed him by the throat. Happening in Lower Paxton Township in Pennsylvania, the incident left Sig with multiple puncture wounds in his neck and face.

Sig was rushed to a veterinarian

Source: Penn Live

Sig’s family rushed him to a veterinarian where he underwent three hours of surgery to repair the damage. Expected to survive his ordeal, Sig probably has a new respect for black bears, especially if they have cubs, as the bear was reported to have.

Authorities plan to capture the bear mom and cubs

Source: Penn Live

Authorities made plans to set out traps to capture the momma bear and cubs so that she can be tranquilized and moved with her cubs to a less populated area. The incident happened after Matt Reigle’s son let Sig out at around 5 p.m. As Reigle’s son waited, he heard a scuffling sound in the darkness. The dog returned only to be discovered with bloody wounds on his throat and face.

Things could have been much worse for Sig

Source: Penn Live

At this point, the family rushed him to the vet where he received life-saving treatment. According to the vet, the wounds were consistent with the bear grabbing the dog by the throat. As such, Sig was very lucky to still be alive.

Source: Penn Live

A few hours after the incident, Reigle encountered the mother bear and her cubs in some bushes near his driveway. He attempted to drive the bear off by making loud noises and gesturing wildly, but she was determined to stand her ground.

“There was a cub on one side of the car and another cub at my front steps,” he said. “I found myself between two bear cubs and the momma bear was in the bushes grunting at me.”

Factors that draw bears to an area

Pennsylvania Game Warden Michael Doherty, who is working on the trap to capture the bear and cubs, had this to say about what might be attracting bears to the area:

“It’s always the bird feeders,” he said. “I had a bear come through my yard a couple years ago and tore down my feeder. That’s when I stopped using a bird feeder.”

He further recommends that residents refrain from filling their bird feeders until after the bears have gone into hibernation, which usually takes place by the first of December.

Spreading the word

Source: Wikimedia Commons/Ron Shawley

Reigle’s main concern is for the children who live in the neighborhood. He wants to get the word out on what happened to his dog to prevent anyone else from being injured. Here’s a video with more on what to do if you encounter a bear and how to avoid bear encounters altogether.

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

Source: REI

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