Local authorities in Big Bar, California said that a woman, Erin Wilson was attacked by a mountain lion while she was walking her 2 1/2-year-old Belgian Malinois dog, Eva.
“I will never be able to live up to how amazing and loyal she is to me,” Erin Wilson told the Sacramento Bee on Tuesday.
The incident took place in Northern California on Monday in rural Trinity County, which is about four hours northwest of Sacramento.
Erin said that she was taking a stroll that afternoon and walking down a path with Eva a few yards in front of her when the mountain lion lunged out of the bush and swiped at her.
The big cat scratched Wilson’s left shoulder through her jacket causing her to scream in pain.
“I yelled ‘Eva!’ and she came running,” Erin told Sacramento Bee. “And she hit that cat really hard.”
The dog, weighing around 55 pounds, was much smaller than the mountain lion, however, that didn’t matter, she was protecting her momma and started furiously fighting with the cat.
“They fought for a couple seconds, and then I heard her start crying,” Erin said.
The mountain lion had the dog by the head and wouldn’t let go, even with Erin throwing rocks, sticks, and punching at the big cat’s head and body. She said she even tried to choke and gouge the animal’s eyes out but it kept using its back legs to kick her off.
What she was doing wasn’t working, so she ran back to the truck and grabbed a tire iron, and flagged down a passing car. The driver of that car, Sharon Houston, grabbed a long PVC pipe and pepper spray and ran towards Eva and the mountain lion.
They began beating the lion with the PVC pipe while the big cat attempted to drag the dog off the trail. It wasn’t until they whipped out the pepper spray and started spraying the cat that it finally let go of the dog and fled back to the wilderness.
Erin drove to the hospital where she was treated for non-life-threatening injuries like scratches, scrapes, and bruises. However, Eva had two skull fractures, a punctured sinus cavity, and severe damage to her left eye.
As they were driving Eva to the vet, the dog was having seizures along the way, but once they got to the animal hospital, the vet was able to stabilize her. Erin later set up a GoFundMe account to help pay for the ongoing medical expenses.
“We are hopeful she will pull through this,” Kenny wrote. “She’s a fighter, clearly.”
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife said they collected samples from the wounds for DNA analysis authorities said they will try to trap the mountain lion. If they are able to track it down, they plan to kill it to prevent it from attacking more people in the future.