San Mateo County Sheriff's office has reported that a mountain lion snatched a small dog from a Pescadero bedroom in the early morning hours on Monday. The incident occurred after the residents reportedly left their French doors partially open for the dog to go outside.
Reports indicate that the 15-pound Portuguese Podengo, was at the foot of a bed near the dog's owner and a child. Fortunately, the dog woke them up around 3 a.m. after it barked aggressively.
The witness informed the authorities that she saw the shadow of an animal coming into the room through the French doors after which it grabbed the dog from the bed, and walked out. The witness grabbed a flashlight and saw large wet paw prints near the bedroom's entrance before calling 911.
Upon arrival, the police discovered paw prints resembling those of a mountain lion and notified the Department of Fish and Wildlife. After the occurrence, the San Mateo authorities are advising and reminding local residents to secure their doors and windows before sleeping.
The San Mateo authorities are also asking residents to heed the advice posted on the department's website about avoiding mountain lion interactions. The department’s website points out that the residents may be attracting mountain lions to their property without knowing it.
The website indicates that more than half of California is mountain lion habitat, adding that mountain lions generally exist wherever deer are found. It also points out that they are solitary and elusive, and their nature is to avoid humans.
The mountain lions prefer deer. However, if allowed, they also eat pets and livestock. In extremely rare cases, even people have fallen prey to mountain lions. If they threaten people they are immediately killed. However, those that prey on pets or livestock can be killed by a property owner after the required depredation permit is secured.
The department also warns the residents Living in mountain lion country not to feed deer since it is illegal in California and it will attract mountain lions. Residents are also asked to Deer-proof their landscaping by avoiding plants that deer like to eat. The residents are also asked to trim brush so as to reduce hiding places for mountain lions. They’re also warned not to leave small children or pets outside unattended.