American Black Bear walks across a grassy field
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Brave Woman Gets Charged by Bear, Punches It In the Nose

Lynn Kelly has a mean right-hook, and she's proved she's not afraid to use it on an attacking black bear.

Not many people can claim to have gone toe-to-toe with a bear and come out on top, let alone fist-to-face. But Lynn Kelly, 64, of Porter, Maine, did just that when a black bear went after her dog last Friday. Thankfully, she came out with only minor injuries—and now has one heck of a story to tell.

As Kelly told WMUR news, she was spending a peaceful morning gardening in her backyard when her dog, Scooby, leapt off the deck and charged into the woods. Soon, Kelly heard Scooby screaming and squealing and she ran over to the wood line, calling for her pooch.

Scooby came bolting back, but he wasn't alone—a black bear was hot on his tail.

Kelly told WMUR news that when she saw the bear, she tried to look big, yelling at the bear to scare it off. Scooby joined in, jumping around and barking at the bear. While Kelly's actions are by-the-books bear safety when confronted by one of the giant animals (stand your ground, make yourself bigger, speak loudly), this particular black bear wasn't deterred.

The bear charged at Kelly. With nothing left to do, she hauled back and punched the bear right in the nose.

The bear bit Kelly's hand and wrist before letting go and retreating into the woods. When she saw that she was bleeding, Kelly ran back into the house and called 911. The police and fire department arrived and the 64-year-old was taken to a hospital in North Conway, New Hampshire, to treat her four puncture wounds.

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife have called the incident a "provoked attack" and have set up two live-capture traps to remove the bear from the neighborhood.

Officials have also warned that dogs should be walked on non-retractable leashes in bear territory, and that you should not attempt to get between your dog and a bear. Unleashed dogs can startle bears, and their barking and lunging can be seen as a threat by bears, inciting an attack.

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