A woman and her dog had a close call after a mountain lion came after her and her dog Sunday evening in Deadwood, South Dakota.
Virginia Potter had just taken her 6-month-old Corgi named Shorty outside around 7 p.m. when the puppy became nervous. Apparently Shorty was trying to warn his owner of danger, but as Potter told the Rapid City Journal, she didn’t realize it right away. In fact, she thought Shorty was riled up again over the rabbits that frequent her yard.
“Shorty usually barks at them and I said, ‘Shorty, be quiet,’” Potter told the Rapid City Journal. But a moment later, Potter realized Shorty was attempting to warn her of danger as a large mountain lion suddenly appeared and made a beeline for the woman and her dog. Potter said the big cat cleared two large fences as it came after them.
Both Potter and Shorty’s flight-or-flight instincts took over and they both made a mad dash towards the house. And, like a scene straight out of a movie, they dramatically made it into their house only seconds before the mountain lion was on top of them.
“It was two feet away when we got to the door, and it was huge,” Potter told the Rapid City Journal. “I have never been that scared in my life. It was terrifying.”
Police officers came to investigate and discovered that there were not one, but two mountain lions in the area. While an officer did shoot at one of the mountain lions, it was a miss and the animal got away. Officers also discovered a dead deer, apparently killed by one of the big cats, in the area.
While the mountain lion did not return during a police stakeout of the area, Potter is taking no chances and plans to not take Shorty outside too early in the morning or after dark from now on. In the interest of additional safety, Shorty will have to make use of a “pee pad” from now on.
“We just won’t give him a reason to have lunch here,” Potter told the paper.
As for the mountain lion, Deadwood Police Chief Kelly Fully told the paper that the animal is likely a problem cat and officers will try to scare the animal out of the area, but will take action if necessary. “We realize they share the area with us,” Fuller said. “They are a magnificent animal, and they have their place here. But our job is about public safety, and sometimes we have to take action.”
It’s worth mentioning that South Dakota’s mountain lion season is still in session at this point. Hunts are slated to continue in the Black Hills area, where Deadwood is located, until March 31, or until quotas of lions are reached.