A rare animal close encounter was captured on tape in the rural area of the northwest Victoria Highlands in Canada. Two pet dogs named Kovu and Teaka were seen barking at a young hissing cougar in an apparent attempt to drive the wild animal away from the house. Kovu’s owner, Khanh Vu, was reading a newspaper indoors when he heard the ruckus and told Global News, “We never would imagine they would be about 10 feet from my main doors, main entrance here. That’s quite a concern to my family and my children.” Vu grabbed his camera and filmed the standoff while attempting to call the dogs into the house.
The home is on the edge of an undeveloped park and cougar sightings in the remote area are not uncommon. However, the animals are usually solitary and do not get as close as they did in this instance. Teaka’s owner, Brittany Kinahan was working when the encounter occurred but is glad to have the protection of the dogs and happy to know they can take care of themselves. In fact witnesses reported that the two dogs had harassed the same cougar on previous occasions, and it has visited the area three times. Brittany said, “It’s a little bit nerve-wracking, but it’s also a part of the reality of living out in the Highlands area where we are, right on the Gowlland Tod trail and we are in their territory so it makes sense to see them now and then.” There were no injuries to the dogs nor the cougar, who later escaped up a tree.
Conservation officer, Peter Pauwels told CTV News, “It appears to be a young cougar. If it’s hanging around anyone, residents, you know more than once or twice we’re, then that’s something we’d want to look at as to why that’s happening. Because that’s not what they should be doing.” The British Columbia Ministry of Environment advises that during an encounter with a cougar, you should stay calm and keep the cougar in view while making yourself appear as large as possible and allowing the animal to have a clear path of escape.