WARNING: The contents of this story are graphic in nature and may not be suitable for all readers.
The man who killed a cougar to protect his dog on a forest road outside West Kelowna did so without breaking the law, according to the B.C. Conservation Officer Service.
Conservation officers launched an investigation shortly after the Sept. 22 incident. They interviewed the man and witnesses of the attack.
A video of the incident posted to YouTube shows the man at his campsite as a cougar runs towards his two large dogs, attacking one of them. The man then grabs a machete and strikes the cougar several times, eventually killing it. Black Press Media has chosen to run the video only partially due to its graphic nature.
The investigation concluded that the man killed the cougar lawfully.
Conservation officers noted the adult female cougar was severely emaciated and had porcupine quills in its mouth.
“It is not unusual for a cougar to view a dog as a food source. Roaming pets can be easy prey for cougars, so the public is reminded to keep them leashed,” said the Conservation Officer Service in an email to Black Press Media.
The man who filmed the video, Stuart McQueen, spoke with Black Press Media on Sept. 30. He said he yelled at the man to call back his dogs when he saw the cougar approaching.
“They were just not listening to him calling them to come. And, at that point is when the cat turned and looked at one of the dogs and noticed it and was like, ‘Alright, I can get a meal,’” he said.
The dog reportedly died from the attack.
The 1:15 clip that McQueen posted to his YouTube channel has been viewed more than 130,000 times since it was posted on Sept. 27.