ASHLAND, Ore. – An Ashland resident said they saw a cougar in their backyard just a few hundred yards from the downtown plaza, according to Ashland Police.
The reported sighting happened around 5:30 Thursday morning in the area of Central Avenue and North Laurel Street.
APD said the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife have been notified of the sighting.
Police took the opportunity to remind the public of ODFW’s guidelines when encountering a cougar:
Cougars often will retreat if given the opportunity. Always leave the animal a way to escape. Stay calm and stand your ground. Maintain direct eye contact. Pick up any children, but do so without bending down or turning your back on the cougar. Back away slowly. Do not run. Running triggers a response in cougars which could lead to an attack. Raise your voice and speak firmly. If the cougar seems aggressive, raise your arms to make yourself look larger and clap your hands. If in the very unusual event that a cougar attacks you, fight back with rocks, sticks, garden tools or any other items available.
For more information, you can view the entire flyer at http://www.dfw.state.or.us/wildlife/living_with/docs/CougarBroch.pdf