DNA evidence confirms the report from last week of a mountain lion possibly entering a California home and taking a pet dog off the bed as the owner slept.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife said in a Monday, April 24, press release that a trace amount of mountain lion DNA was found in a blood sample taken from the Pescadero, Calif., home last week.
According to the press release, the homeowner called 911 at around 3 a.m. on April 17 to report an animal had come into her home through an open door and had "taken her 15-pound dog, which was sleeping on the end of her bed."
San Mateo County Sheriff's deputies responded and could not find the dog, but did see wet paw prints at the bedroom doorway. The case was referred to the CDFW, which sent a wildlife officer, who didn't find obvious signs of a mountain lion, but he collected a sample from a drop of blood he found on a door.
According to the wildlife agency:
Due to the nature of the report, the wildlife officer drove the blood sample to the CDFW Wildlife Forensics Laboratory in Sacramento the same day. Forensic analysis confirmed the blood found in the home was predominantly domestic dog, with trace amounts of mountain lion DNA, confirming a mountain lion had entered the home and taken the dog.
The agency said the property owners, though eligible for a permit allowing them to remove the predator removed from their property, declined the permit.
CDFW stresses that this lion's behavior is extremely rare. Most mountain lions are elusive in nature and rarely seen. CDFW urges residents in the area to take all reasonable actions to secure their properties and domestic pets to better coexist with not only mountain lions, but all wildlife. For tips, please see www.wildlife.ca.gov/Keep-Me-Wild.