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Old June 1, 2018, 10:41 AM   #1
briandg
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Thoughts on an animal attack?

Ten years ago, a deputy shot and killed a "black panther" that appeared to be menacing an old woman in a semi-rural area. It was a domestic escapee or release, and in no way did it have to die, but analyzing the details, there never seemed to be any other choice. The circumstances were just too problematic to let the situation evolve any further, I believe, to just let it continue for an hour or even two.

http://www.neoshodailynews.com/artic...NEWS/305209887

Quote:
A Newton County deputy shot and killed what experts believe to have been a domesticated black panther Monday outside of Neosho as it tried to batter its way into a woman’s home.

A Newton County deputy shot and killed what experts believe to have been a domesticated black panther Monday outside of Neosho as it tried to batter its way into a woman’s home.
Cpl. Donn Hall, who was not available for comment Tuesday, responded to a 9-1-1 call from a resident at 9555 Orchid Drive, southwest of Neosho, who told dispatchers a panther was trying to get in her back door.

“Most of the time when you get a call like that you’re like ‘OK, whatever’ ” said Capt. Richard Leavens, patrol supervisor with the sheriff’s department.

But when Hall arrived at the residence just after 6 a.m., he was met by the reported panther, which began running toward him. According to Leavens, Hall grabbed his service 12-gauge shotgun and pumped two shells into the attacking animal. Initially deterred, the panther retreated down the driveway, but then turned back and came at Hall again. He had time to squeeze off his last shotgun round and then drew his Glock .45 service pistol and emptied the clip into the cat, which dropped it.

“You’re shooting at something about the size of a pie-plate (the panther’s head) and then the adrenaline dumps on you,” Leavens noted. “He didn’t do too bad.”

The resident, who was not identified, later told officers that she had been outside when the panther ran at her. She screamed and took off for her house. The cat would have overtaken her if her dogs hadn’t jumped in to fight the animal off. It bought her the time she needed to reach her door and call the police. To her horror, the panther — who had brushed the dogs aside — then tried to break its way through the door to get at her.
Hall arrived shortly thereafter. The dogs weren’t injured in the fight.

The panther, meanwhile, was later weighed in at 60 pounds and measured roughly three feet. Leavens said agents from the Department of Conservation were called in to examine the corpse and said the cat, a male, wasn’t a fully matured adult. Interestingly, it had been de-clawed, indicating someone had owned it as a pet.

“Or at least they were keepers, I don’t know who would want to have a ‘pet’ like that,” Leavens said.


While exotic animals are legal to keep in Missouri, it requires a permit, which is kept on file at the county sheriff’s department. Leavens said the only such permit in Newton County is for — oddly enough — a Bengal Tiger. He said the department had not been notified of anyone in the area reporting a missing panther.

However, considering the cat’s range can be considerable, sometimes more than 100 miles from its home, Leavens said it might not have originated from very close-by.

Meanwhile, Hall was given the carcass of the animal and is having it stuffed at a Joplin taxidermist, Leavens said.

“Well, he will to have something to show his grandkids as proof,” he joked.
Given the remoteness of the area, lack of equipment on site, probable delay in getting equipment any risk to any persons there, and the highly probable case that it would have just left the scene into the forest to menace other people.

With all of the hindsight available now, was there any option that he could have taken?
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Old June 1, 2018, 10:52 AM   #2
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Whatever happened, it occurred ten years ago.

There is no such thing as a black panther.
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Old June 1, 2018, 11:27 AM   #3
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"...There is no such thing as a black panther..." Absolutely not a domesticated one. Net search that now and you get 52,400,000 results about the movie. snicker.
Otherwise, it's a colour variation of a leopard or jaguar. There's a black colour variation ocelot and margay(South and Central American small kitty.).
Running from any big cat just amuses 'em. Triggers the attack response. That'd be, "Yipes! Dinner's gettin' away!"
60 pounds is small for any of 'em. 60 Kilos maybe. Unless it was a baby or a small lady cat.
"...any option that he could have taken..." Who? The cop? No. But he should have had slugs.
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Old June 1, 2018, 02:08 PM   #4
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Black variants of jaguars are known to exist, but they are bigger cats than reported. The black color gene is dominant in a lot of species, so some sort of cross may be possible, I suppose. Mankind loves to screw up animals. This cat was found to have been declawed, so the idea that it was an escapee seems pretty sound.

The thing that strikes me in the story is that the animal was stalking and attacking. I would presume that an immediate defense was necessary and there was no time to thoughtfully consider how to trap or sedate the animal. Those measures are fine if you are chasing the critter. When the critter is chasing you, not so much.
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Old June 1, 2018, 03:51 PM   #5
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3 rounds of buckshot and a full mag of 45 to kill it ? Thats one tough cat.
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Old June 1, 2018, 03:56 PM   #6
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India has black leopards, but as far as I know not common in Africa. It's not a separate species, just a color variation.

I was wrong, does occur in Africa, but very rare.

http://sabie.co.za/blog/?p=912
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Old June 1, 2018, 04:05 PM   #7
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Poor poor kitty, it just wanted to play
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Old June 1, 2018, 04:28 PM   #8
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I put "black panther" in quotes, as it was in quotes in the article, and of course I knew that it wasn't a black panther. I guess that I should have said that it was a melanistic phase jaguare smuggled in from central america or leopard.

Yep, it happened ten years ago so it's completely irrelevant to today, since the only dangerous animals around here now are the black bears that have been seen in that same county. And personally, unless the guy tazed it and zip tied it to the clothes line, I don't see any way that it could have been contained, and even I'm not stupid enough to believe that this trick would work.

Never mind.
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Old June 1, 2018, 09:45 PM   #9
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Animal attacks are real. Without debating semantics of "black panther" animal attacks do indeed happen. I have defended my oldest two daughters (when they were very small) from two rather unfriendly dogs attacking. I fired a shot into the ditchbank as I believed it my only option (I still believe that, couldn't shoot at the dogs as there was a house behind them, and couldn't go hands on because there were two daughters 15 feet apart and two dogs). They ran off from the noise, no further incident. Ive known several cops who had no choice but to shoot a dog. I'm not a fan of it either, but it happens.
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Old June 1, 2018, 11:02 PM   #10
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3 rounds of buckshot and a full mag of 45 to kill it ? Thats one tough cat.
I agree. 00 buckshot at close range is serious bidness and several rounds of .45 more of the same. Of course rounds that miss are ineffective regardless ballistics.

I'm unsympathetic to the cat. Grandma shooting it would be a better story. After 10 years I would have her beating it to death with an iron skillet. Never let the facts get in the way of a good story!
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Old June 2, 2018, 01:00 AM   #11
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I actually can give a first hand account of an out of control animal issue. I grew up in an animal hospital and have some relevant advice to anyone LEOs who may encounter an issue like this with animals. I was sitting the animal hospital with my father who is a Large and Small animal vet. He got a call from the local law enforcement who needed his assistance because a vehicle towing cattle to an auction had broken down on the interstate and 3 had gotten loose. They had managed to get 2 roped and back into the truck, but the 3rd stayed far enough away and up high that they didn't want to shoot it (side of a busy interstate) and it was not running. They were not able to rope it.

Well. They ended up tasing the cow and it was effective. Unfortunately once they roped it they failed to secure the other end of the rope and couldn't get the animal into the trailer. Long story short they did end up having to have my father put the animal put down with a .22 mag and a pocket knife after being dropped with an AR15(sounds like overkill, but per LE for safety under recommendation from the vet to make sure it didn't run into traffic). So the advice? Don't be afraid of your taser. It actually can work on an animal no problem. Especially if it happens to be an out of control pet that is pissed you are in its territory.

Anyway. As for the Panther? As a Floridian? I am sick and tired of idiots being allowed to own "exotic" pets. I wish we would do something about the trade. Totally justified in shooting this thing. It was attacking a human and that is bad news. Panther or not. There has been a rise in idiots buying large exotic cats and releasing them when they can't control them. Servals and bobcats and all kinds of crap like that.
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Old June 2, 2018, 01:05 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DukeConnor View Post
3 rounds of buckshot and a full mag of 45 to kill it ? Thats one tough cat.
Big cats are tough animals. I have watched some videos of lion and leopard hunters. Some rounds have been known to "pancake" if they shoot it in the thick part of the skull. Gotta remember. The cats evolved to deal with prey much tougher than us 2 legged wimps. They had to develop thick skulls and bodies to deal with hooves and horns and all kinds of stuff. We humans are the most overrated animals when it comes to toughness lol. We MIGHT get away with punching a kangroo...if we are lucky. But we probably couldn't manage to handle a pissed off wild turkey with our hands lol. At least not the one with feathers.
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Old June 2, 2018, 01:40 PM   #13
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"Don't raise up any devil that you can't put down." comes to mind. There are many stories
of irresponsible pet owners,(especially here, in Florida) who get the romantic notion
of raising an exotic animal, only to be eventually overwhelmed by it's long term
maintenance or mature size. These animals are, many times, released illegally or
escape into the wild, which is many times dangerously close to urban environs.

Raised awareness of owner responsibility for their exotic pets, and the trouble that
cute little Gator, Cat, or Snake can cause, 5 years down the road, is important.
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Old June 2, 2018, 06:40 PM   #14
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More than one owner of a "pet" big cat has been killed by Lil Sweetness.

There have been a few cougar kills of people. I've read of at least two in Colorado (joggers in the boonies) and two in California (a housewife in her yard and a bicyclist in a park). Four attacks in Big Bend National Park, one with serious injuries.

IOW, don't mess around in bunny-hugger mode.
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Old June 2, 2018, 08:51 PM   #15
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India has black leopards, but as far as I know not common in Africa. It's not a separate species, just a color variation.

I was wrong, does occur in Africa, but very rare.

http://sabie.co.za/blog/?p=912
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Hagar, actually the name panther comes from the scientific name for South American Jaguars; “Panthers ocna”. There are black Jaguars in the Americas. Also, when I was growing up I personally saw several in Florida. Many people saw them and it was not uncommon to see pelts in the 40s, 50s and 60s. Jaguars require much more territory than Puma. I believe they went extinct in Florida due to range loss. When the Spanish came to Florida they knew about Puma and also a different cat they referred to as Jaguars”Panthers” or panther.

As for taking more to kill them, Jaguars are big. A big puma is small at 100-130 pounds jaguar are twice that size easily only outsized by lions and tigers.

Last edited by Minorcan; June 3, 2018 at 07:33 AM.
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Old June 3, 2018, 12:10 AM   #16
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I do love some large cats, but not enough to risk anything other than dropping it if I think it is hunting me.
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Old June 5, 2018, 12:29 PM   #17
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Quote:
There is no such thing as a black panther.
Panther is a reference to the species Panthera Onca which has a range from the Southwestern United States down through Central America as far as Argentina. Strictly speaking, these cats are Jaguars, but are commonly referred to as Panthers as they come from the genus Panthera.

Panthera Onca can have a solid black coat, so there are manifestly "black panthers".

The term "panther" is also used colloquially to refer to the species Puma Concolor also known as the "cougar", "mountain lion" or "puma" which ranges throughout the New World. Like Panthera Onca, the Puma Concolor can be born as a melanistic variant which would give it a solid black coat.
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Old June 5, 2018, 12:55 PM   #18
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The thing that strikes me in the story is that the animal was stalking and attacking. I would presume that an immediate defense was necessary and there was no time to thoughtfully consider how to trap or sedate the animal.
I've lived my whole life around cats; up to and including Bobcats, Lynx and Puma. I've successfully domesticated feral cats as well as reintroducing cats that had been caged 18 hours a day to the outdoors.

Cats know they can't get care under the Affordable Care Act and thus tend to be risk adverse. ;-) They will generally retreat away from loud noises, aggressive behavior or physical attack. When they don't, something is wrong. I've never seen a cat that was seriously injured (much less one that was shot) press on with an attack unless it was 1) rabid, 2) starving or 3) a female defending its young.

Fortunately, the office in this case kept his head and was accurate enough in his shooting to escape unscathed.
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Old June 5, 2018, 01:17 PM   #19
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You do the best you can with what you are presented with.

Ditto, a loose dog was in our back yard. Said back yard had our cat in it.

I had my 22. The dog came at me (target 22, very fine trigger)

Not sure how low a pressure you can go and not have that gun shoot, but it was in the quarter once range or less.

The dog turned as I was squeezing and went for an open gate I had left for an out.

Said shot did not go off but it was by the hair of its chiny chin chin. Lucky dog.

No regrets, dog had an opening and elected to come at me. Based on speed I was going to and started to shoot as it crossed the 10 foot line.
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Old June 5, 2018, 02:19 PM   #20
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Can't remember

We had a guy killed by a cougar here in Wa. State, just last week two at most.

Mountain bike rider. We have plenty of them here in Wa. Have seen several here in Wa. Over the years.
Have spent more hours in the Oregon woods, have never seen a cougar on the Oregon side.
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Old June 5, 2018, 03:03 PM   #21
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My thoughts? Human threatened by animal. Humans escape unharmed and with no collateral damage to bystanders. Seems like a good outcome to me.
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Old June 5, 2018, 06:21 PM   #22
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This series of attacks happened just last year, just a few minutes from my home.

http://www.azfamily.com/story/358968...-dog-in-anthem

We've also had at least three coyote/human attacks in the last couple years, and a couple black bear attacks up north.

In answer to the OP, my impression is "no," there wasn't anything else he could've done. It's all well and good to come up with an alternative plan with 20/20 hindsight, but when you're in the situation in realtime, in part you have to go with your gut. You don't know the condition of the animal, its intentions, potential risk of harm, etc. But a large cat behaving strangely is potentially very dangerous. I wasn't there, but from the story, I probably would've shot the thing as well. Better safe than sorry.
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Old June 5, 2018, 06:59 PM   #23
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I believe in Main if a moose gets within X distance (50-100 feet?) they shoot it.

It would be a good rule for AK but the in city fools want to see their moose (until they hit one and total their car)
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Old June 5, 2018, 10:29 PM   #24
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Your assessment is right on 5Whisky. Animal attacks happen, and just like an attack with humans, your attacker can be on you in seconds, if not faster with an animal. My wife was attacked by a dog, it happened instantly, and in one bite he almost took her arm off. When I got to the emergency room it was the most horrid thing I had ever seen. I love animals as much as the next person, however they need to act with the same respect for humans beings that we expect from each other. After seeing what happened to my wife, I would recommend being on very high alert if an animal is acting threatening in anyway, even minor. In just one second your whole life can change.
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Old June 6, 2018, 11:26 PM   #25
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Right now, there is a report of "many" cats vanishing around here. There is also a report of a crazy old lady who traps them. There is also another report of a fox being seen in the area.

This area is perfect for fox and coyote, single bachelors. There are enough cats running loose that a fox could live on cat forever. same for coyotes.

I have personally seen foxes twice within a few hundred yards of my home, a coyote ran down my street last year, and a raccoon ate my kid's pet duck. (so I shot it) I do neighborhood watch, haven't seen that fox, but I see maybe a dozen cats every night. If it doesn't move on, there will be a jihad going on. Traps everywhere, poisoned meat, anything. It wouldn't surprise me to hear shots some nights.

On the other hand, there is also a groundhog living somewhere close by, I found the stupid thing in my carport and chased it off. It's fully probable that these people who reported a fox just saw boomer the groundhog.
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