Horror in Hollywood Hills after infamous mountain lion kills a pet Chihuahua out on a walk with shocked dog walker years after it snuck into Los Angeles zoo and killed a koala
- Big cat, named P-22 after his GPS collar, tore the chihuahua away from its walker
- The shocked walker said the dog squealed but the attack was over in seconds
- P-22 is notorious for stalking urban areas and previously killed a koala at LA zoo
- A 2016 study found 52 per cent of mountain lions ate dogs, cats and household pets in California
A mountain lion renowned for killing a koala at Los Angeles Zoo six years ago has now ripped apart the chihuahua of a Hollywood Hills resident as it was out on a walk.
The big cat, referred to as P-22 in line with the designation of his GPS collar, is notorious in the Griffith Park-Silver Lake-Hollywood area of Los Angeles for frequenting residential areas.
But earlier this month, the puma earned yet more notoriety when it set upon a chihuahua named Piper near the Hollywood Reservoir at Creston and Durand Drives, clamping down on the mutt and tearing it away from its horrified walker.
‘I felt the tug and I heard Piper squeal,’ the dogwalker told KTLA. ‘I turn around and I just saw a face. I didn’t know what it was.
‘It was like a two- or three-second struggle… He didn’t growl at all. I didn’t even hear him. I never had a chance.’
Daniel Jimenez, Piper’s owner, was celebrating his daughter’s birthday when he received a text from the walker which read: ‘The mountain lion attacked and took away your dog. Killed your dog.’
‘We thought it was a joke, but it turned out it was real and we were just shocked,’ said Jimenez, who said he was ‘devastated’ by the loss.
The attack came after P-22 staged a daring overnight break-in at Los Angeles zoo in which he leapt over an 8ft wall and dragged the koala out of its enclosure.
The big cat, referred to as P-22 in line with the designation of his GPS collar, is notorious in the Griffith Park-Silver Lake-Hollywood area of Los Angeles for frequenting residential areas
P-22 ripped apart the chihuahua of a Hollywood Hills resident as it was out on a walk (stock image
P-22 is an 11-year old male puma who tips the scale around 123 pounds (55kg) according to the National Park Service’s website.
The cat typically hunts deer, coyotes and other prey in the area, but the service said pumas are ‘opportunistic hunters’ most active at night, meaning it is likely they could attack pets out on evening walks or left outside in gardens overnight.
The park service told CNN they were not aware of any other incidents involving mountain lions attacking leashed pets in the Los Angeles area.
‘There is no evidence that preying on pets is related to an increased chance of an attack on a person, either in mountain lions, or in other urban carnivores such as coyotes,’ the service said in an emailed statement to CNN.
‘Mountain lion attacks on humans are exceedingly rare, although they do occur.’
However, a 2016 study conducted by the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) in California analyzed the stomach contents of 83 of 107 mountain lions legally killed under provisions of special permits and found more than half of them had eaten a dog, cat or other household pets.
Jimenez told KTLA he doesn’t blame the mountain lion for the death of his dog because the cat was just hunting for food.
‘I don’t want anything bad to happen to P-22,’ said Jimenez.
‘I just want people to be safe out there so that nothing like this happens again.’
In addition to the threat from mountain lions, coyotes are another predator owners are being told to protect their pets from.
Andrew Hughan of the DFW said that the safety of a pet is the responsibility of the owner, especially if you live in an area close to the habitat of a wild animal.
He added that pet owners should keep a close eye on their pet when they are out and that the animal should always be on a leash.
It is also important to consider what is around you and even behind you as coyotes have a tendency to sneak up on people.
Hughan said that owners should ideally go into the yard with their pets when they let them out at night time.
The presence of a human can act as a deterrent and prevent a coyote jumping over a fence and stealing a small dog or cat.