Sep 7 2021

How to Respond to a Mountain Lion in Piedmont

Piedmont Police Department Advice Responding to Mountain Lion Sightings in Piedmont –

  • Do not jog or hike alone. Go in groups with adults supervising children.
  • Keep children close to you. Do not allow children to play along river banks, in heavy vegetation, or alone at dawn or dusk. When hiking with children, watch them closely and never let them run ahead of you. Observations of captured wild mountain lions reveal that the animals seem especially drawn to children.

If you encounter a lion, remember the goals are to convince it that you are not prey and that you may be dangerous. Follow these safety tips:

  • Do not approach a lion. Most mountain lions will try to avoid a confrontation. Give them a way to escape.
  • Do not run from a lion. Running may stimulate a mountain lion’s instinct to chase. Instead, stand and face the animal. Make eye contact. If you have small children with you, pick them up if possible so that they don’t panic and run. Although it may be awkward, pick them up without bending over or turning away from the mountain lion.
  • Do not crouch down or bend over. A human standing up is just not the right shape for a lion’s prey. Conversely, a person squatting or bending over resembles a four-legged prey animal. In mountain lion country, avoid squatting, crouching or bending over, even when picking up children.
  • Do all you can to appear larger. Raise your arms. Open your jacket if you are wearing one. Again, pick up small children. Throw stones, branches, or whatever you can reach without crouching or turning your back. Wave your arms slowly and speak firmly in a loud voice. The idea is to convince the mountain lion that you are not prey and that you may be a danger to it.
  • Fight back if attacked. A hiker in southern California used a rock to fend off a mountain lion that was attacking his son. Others have fought back successfully with sticks, caps, jackets, garden tools and their bare hands. Since a mountain lion usually tries to bite the head or neck, try to remain standing and face the attacking animal.

The Piedmont Police Department would like to make our community aware that we have had two different reported sightings and received a video clip of what appears to be a mountain lion. The sightings were in the area of Davies Tennis Stadium and Nace Avenue. Our Animal Services Officers have been in contact with the Fish & Wildlife Department and have been advised that due to drought conditions and wildfires these animals are coming down into urban areas looking for food and water. Do not leave pets or pet food and water bowls outside.

Encounters with mountain lions are rare and we have copied the safety guidelines below from the National Park Service website if you are interested in more information.…
Please report all mountain lion sightings to Piedmont Animal Services at 510-420-3000.

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