Massachusetts Man Attacked by Bobcat in Garage; Gun Comes in Handy

Monday, 07 Jan 2013 05:17 PM

By Michael Mullins

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Seconds after entering his garage in Brookfield, Mass., on Sunday, Roger Mundell Jr. heard a hissing sound coming from behind his wife's car. Before he had a chance to react, a bobcat pounced on him, wrapping its front legs around his torso while sinking its fangs into his face.

"It was on me in a split second," 53-year-old Mundell told the Boston Globe just hours after being attached. "I have bite marks in my eyelid, up my forehead. It scratched my back. I was bleeding like crazy."

After managing to get the cat off of him, Mundell and his wife were able to subdue the animal and Mundell killed the animal with a .380-caliber Smith&Wesson automatic, but not before the bobcat attacked Mundell's 15-year-old nephew in the couple's front yard.

Massachusetts Environmental Police took the dead cat to be tested for rabies, which officials believe the cat may likely have had due to its unusual behavior.

"This is completely out of character for a bobcat, even to be in the garage in the first place,” said Tom French, assistant director for the state Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. “It is completely consistent with an animal that may have rabies."

Asked by the Globe how prevalent bobcat attacks were in Massachusetts, French could only remember possibly one other attack in the state.

Though the predatory cat is common in certain parts of Massachusetts, they generally avoid all interactions with humans, according to French.

Mundell, who lives on a 90-acre piece of property, said he routinely sees bobcats on or near his property, though they have never been a problem before Sunday.

As a precaution, Mundell and his wife, who was not bitten but was exposed to the animal's blood, along with his nephew, were all treated for rabies at a local hospital on Sunday.

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