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Mountain Lion Tries to Break Into Home

November 11, 2000|KATIE COOPER

A Lang Ranch homeowner told authorities that a mountain lion, apparently in pursuit of food, attempted to break into her Calle Compo home Friday morning.

Lorraine Scarano, 31, reported hearing banging sounds on the doors leading to her backyard about 8 a.m.

She went to investigate and said she saw the cat standing nearby staring into the home at her, before it turned and darted over the fence line surrounding the one-acre property.

The animal's paw prints were on the glass doors, she said.

A deputy with the Ventura County Sheriff's Department came to the home about an hour later, but the animal was gone.

Scarano said the cat had been sitting under a tree outside the property line before the deputy arrived.

"I was scared to death," said Scarano, a mother of two. "It was huge."

Scarano said she was convinced the animal was a mountain lion. She is used to seeing bobcats in her yard, but this animal was considerably larger, she said.

The family recently purchased a German shepherd puppy, which Scarano believes the cat saw as prey.

Senior Deputy Tim May said the department occasionally receives reports of mountain lions in residential areas.

"We do live in an area where there are wild animals," he said.

If she sees the cat again in her yard, Scarano said, she will call her gun-owning neighbors to come shoot it.

"My kids play outside," she said.

But May said residents encountering large wildlife on their property should call 911.

"I think people are exposing themselves to problems if they're shooting just because it's there," May said. "If you're in danger, that's a different circumstance."

Mountain lions are protected animals under state law.

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