It’s 4:30 a.m.--and you and your spouse are asleep in your bedroom, your two faithful old Labs are snoozing on the floor at the foot of your bed.
Suddenly, you’re awakened by a sound--a movement--and you realize an animal is coming through the darkness, toward your bed.
A wild animal.
In one of the more frightening tales we’ve ever heard relating to bold wild animal behavior, a mountain lion entered the open doors of a home belonging to Mack and Jacquie Anderson in the foothills southwest of Denver, Colorado early Monday, snatching their 12-year-old yellow Labrador retriever from where it slept.
Jennifer Churchill with the Colorado Division of Wildlife said the French doors of the Anderson’s Idledale, Colo. bedroom were left open that August night when the hungry cougar entered.
“It was about 4:30 in the morning,” Churchill said. “The gal awoke to a sound, got up out of bed and saw something about a foot away from her. She said to her husband, ‘There’s an animal in here!’”
It’s enough to make even the most-seasoned outdoors or wildlife person weak-kneed.
The 130-pound mountain lion grabbed the female Lab and quickly escaped out the door.
When the remains of the 72-pound dog were discovered partially buried in pine needles later that morning, the Andersons agreed to allow wildlife officers to use the carcass as bait to apprehend the killer cat.
The lion, a male, was successfully trapped Tuesday morning and subsequently killed by wildlife authorities.
The Rocky Mountain News reported that the mountain lion didn’t threaten the Andersons and the other dog in the bedroom.
“When lions go after something, they’re pretty single-minded,” said the DOW’s Churchill. “They generally zero-in on things that are vulnerable. They want what they’re going after. They’re not distracted by other animals. They kill to eat.”
In retrospect, considering all the safety advice that wildlife agencies offer to those inhabiting mountain lion country, they might want to add one new rule.
Like, close all the doors to your house before retiring for the night.