A man from Ucluelet, British Columbia, recently scared off a mountain lion that had entered his home by doing his best impression of a bear. Ted Benson told the Westerly News that he opened his front door earlier that evening to air out the house after running his wood stove all day. When he went to close the door, Benson’s housecat had slipped in, followed by a much larger cat.
“It was weird, there was no sound, no nothing, it was eerily quiet and all of a sudden I see my cat squirt in. Next thing you know, I hear claws trotting across concrete,” Benson said. “I saw a big head lunging to eat my cat. I thought it was a dog originally; a cougar would be the last thing I’d expect.” Benson rushed to protect his cat before realizing it wasn’t a dog at all—it was a mountain lion. That’s when he started roaring like a bear. He claims his instincts simply took over.
“I got louder and tried to act more aggressive. I was just basically lunging at it; it was one or two feet away at most,” he said. “You can’t act scared, you’ve got to definitely fight for your life. If you show you’re bigger than them and shout and try to intimidate them, they don’t want to get hurt. They want the easiest way to get a meal and not have to risk their lives.”
“I looked it straight in the eyes,” he said. “I remembered loggers saying that they used to have eyes painted on the back of their helmets.” The act worked, and the cougar eventually turned and walked away, giving Benson a chance to finally notice the animal’s tremendous size. “You could almost feel the physical muscle vibrations from the thing twitching with each step it’s taking as it’s leaving the house.”
With the door closed, Benson peered out his window and watched the animal walk towards another cougar that he hadn’t seen sitting in his driveway. He thinks the pair may have been hunting together and wanted his cat for an easy meal. Amazingly, Benson’s neighbor witnessed the whole episode as she was driving her taxi past his house. She even honked her horn to shoo the big cats away. Benson reported the encounter to the B.C. Conservation Officer Service, and said he’ll never leave his door wide open again.