A man was attacked by a mountain lion while he was sitting in a hot tub in Colorado, prompting a search by authorities for the wildcat after the animal left scratches on the man's head.
A Colorado Parks and Wildlife press release revealed that a man was swatted in the head by a mountain lion while he was attempting to relax with his wife sometime around 8 p.m., near Nathrop, Colorado.
The man told officers that he and his wife were sitting in an in-ground hot tub, which was located away from the house, when the man felt something grab his head. The couple began screaming and splashing water at the animal before the victim's wife grabbed a flashlight, shining it on the animal.
The man suffered four scratches on the top of his head and near his ear, but declined to receive medical assistance. Officers on the scene determined that the scratches were consistent a mountain lion.
Authorities believe that the wild animal didn't notice that there were people in the hot tub, prompting the attack.
“We think it's likely the mountain lion saw the man’s head move in the darkness at ground level but didn’t recognize the people in the hot tub,” said Sean Shepherd, the area wildlife manager.
“The couple did the right thing by making noise and shining a light on the lion. Although this victim had only minor injuries, we take this incident seriously. We have alerted neighbors and posted signs warning of lion activity. And we will continue to track the lion and lion activity," Shepherd added.
Wildlife officers began a search for the lion, but could not find any mountain lion tracks due to the frozen snow on the ground. The officers declined the use of tracking hounds due to a nearby subdivision, along with a nearby hot springs resort complex within a mile of the report.
This was the first reported attack by a mountain lion in the state in over a year, with the previous coming in late February 2022. However, it was the 24th attack on a human in Colorado since 1990. In total, three people have died from mountain lion attacks in Colorado since 1990.
Authorities say a single trap was set nearby in hopes of catching the lion.
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