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An Alberta man speaks about an experience he won't soon forget. Saving his dog from the grasp of a cougar in an Alberta Tim Hortons parking lot.

Man punches cougar to save dog, lives to tell the tale

Daniel Martins
Digital Reporter

Thursday, December 29, 2016, 10:06 AM - WARNING: Graphic content

This sounds like it should be one of those "meanwhile in Australia" stories, but this tale of a man rescuing a beloved pet from a wild animal is made-in-Canada.

Will Gibb of Red Deer, Alta., was meeting a friend at a Tim Hortons in Whitecourt, near Edmonton, and let his two dogs, Sasha and Mongo, out into the parking lot to stretch their legs a bit, when Sasha was set upon by a cougar that had been hiding in the woods.

As Gibb told CBC, above, he cast aside all thoughts other than saving his pet, and didn't even realize he was dealing with a cougar until after he'd thrown the first punch. 

"I wasn't really analyzing it too much at the time," Gibb told the broadcaster after the attack, which took place on Boxing Day. "All that was going through my mind is that I had to protect my dog."

Both dog and owner suffered injuries during the fight, which, to hear Gibb describe it, was a full-on brawl between man and beast before the cougar fled into the woods. Gibb returned to tend to Sasha, but the cougar returned to attack a second time, and Gibb at one point ended up having to fend off both the big cat, and the bites of his own frightened dog.

Eventually, the cougar fled for good, and both of Gibbs' dogs were taken to safety, and police later tracked the cougar down and killed it, according to CBC.

"I wouldn't recommend everybody wrassle with a cougar, but in this case it worked for the best," RCMP Sgt. Jack Poitras told the broadcaster.

Cougars are apex predators that pack a lot of power into a deceptively small frame. Canadian Geographic says the big cats can weigh up to 200 pounds. Most commonly found in British Columbia and Alberta, its original range once encompassed much of the rest of Canada, and sightings are still sometimes reported in Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes.

SOURCES: CBC | Canadian Geographic

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