SANTA CLARA CO. – A mountain lion that attacked a 6-year-old boy this afternoon in Santa Clara County on a hiking trail southwest of Cupertino was an isolated incident and the search for the animal will continue until dusk, a state Department of Fish and Wildlife official said.
The attack was reported around 1:15 p.m. on Montebello Road – a hiking trail near Pichetti Winery.
The boy’s parents allegedly had to physically fight off the lion away from him, state Department of Fish and Wildlife Lt. Patrick Foy said.
The child was transported to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center for scratches and wounds consistent with lion attacks the department has
investigated in the past, he said.
Valley Medical Center spokeswoman Joy Alexiou said the boy was in serious condition but was upgraded to fair condition this evening.
The child suffered injuries that were not believed to be life-threatening, Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Sgt. Kurtis Stenderup said.
Officials with the state Department of Fish and Wildlife, as well as sheriff’s deputies have closed all hiking trails in the area and established a perimeter, Stenderup said.
Unless the mountain lion is found today, crews assisted with trained dogs from the department will continue their search on Monday, Foy
Mountain lions are “extremely rare” and Foy estimated there have only been more than a dozen reported attacks across the state in the past 100 years.
Anyone who encounters a mountain lion is advised to not run away but confront the cat by making noises, throwing objects and trying to appear larger.
More information on mountain lions is available online by visiting http://www.keepmewild.org.
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