‘Aggressive’ mountain lions killed after threatening AZ neighborhood, officials say

Three “aggressive” mountain lions were killed after threatening an Arizona neighborhood for weeks, wildlife officials said.

A group of four mountain lions was reported attacking and killing dogs in Prescott for the past few weeks, the Arizona Department of Game and Fish said in a Thursday, May 25, news release.

The animals became a threat to the area when they started getting closer to homes, acting less fearful toward people and becoming more aggressive, officials said. Wildlife officers said they decided to “lethally remove” the animals.

Most recently, a mountain lion attacked a man’s dog, while another one was aggressive toward him on Sunday, May 21, officials said.

A 3- to 5-year-old female lion was killed the same day by officers. Two other animals were killed on May 23 and May 24, officials said, and may be the female’s offspring.

Wildlife officers are still searching for the fourth mountain lion.

“The last thing we want to do is put an animal down. But public safety is our top priority, and this situation had risen to a level where there was a risk to the community and we had to act,” the department’s Kingman regional supervisor Karen Klima said in the release.

Anyone who sees a mountain lion acting aggressively or lacking fear toward people can contact the Arizona Game and Fish Department at 623-236-7201.

Prescott is about 100 miles north of Phoenix.

What to do if you spot a mountain lion

Mountain lions can cause serious injuries or death to humans, wildlife officials said.

Although officials said the chances of an attack happening are small, there are ways people can stay safe while coming into contact with the animal.

  • Don’t approach the animal. Stay calm and talk loudly.

  • Don’t run from a mountain lion because they might chase you.

  • Stand and face it. Make eye contact.

  • Raise arms or open your jacket to appear bigger. Wave your arms slowly to show you aren’t “easy prey.”

  • Toss anything around you without crouching or turning your back.

  • Slowly back away toward a busy area while keeping eye contact.

  • Keep children from panicking.

  • If the animal attacks, fight back with anything around you, including rocks, sticks, hat, jacket, garden tools and your bare hands.

  • Mountain lions typically try to bite the head or neck, so officials said it’s important to stay standing and facing the animal.

  • Any mountain lion attack should be reported to 911.

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