Jan 12, 2017: SEDONA, AZ. — The AZGFD responded to calls involving a bobcat, after it attacked four people in separate incidents within 2.5 miles in the Sedona area.
The initial attack occurred at around 8:30 a.m. when a man was bitten and scratched by a bobcat sitting under his vehicle. AZGFD and local law enforcement officers attempted to locate the animal and at 2 p.m., they were alerted that three staff members at Los Abrigados Resort were attacked by a bobcat.
The bobcat was located, lethally removed, and transported to the Arizona State Health Laboratory for a standard necropsy and rabies testing. Positive rabies results were reported late Friday.
Bobcats roam the southern deserts and are frequently spotted but rarely seen. Primarily in pursuit of small game that includes rabbits but in extreme environmental conditions, in terms of availability of prey, they will become more aggressive. Like most wild animals, this aggressive behavior can be attributed also to protection instincts or disease. This behavior can lead cats to infiltrate population areas and have been known to attack small dogs and house cats as part of their diet. This is common with the larger Mountain Lion (Cougar) and is often spotted in these population areas.
Owners of small pets are advised to be aware of these sightings and keep their pets inside and not alone outside. A fenced in backyard is no barrier to these cats and pets have been lost because of owner over confidence of “nothing will happen”.
The public is encouraged to contact the Arizona Game and Fish Department at (623) 236-7201 or Yavapai County Community Health Services at (928) 442-5509 if they believe they or their pets may have been exposed to a bobcat recently this area.
The public is advised to avoid wildlife exhibiting unusual wildlife behaviors which can include; showing no fear of humans, aggressive behavior, staggering and/or acting sickly, and nocturnal mammals active during daytime. If a wildlife emergency situation occurs call 911. To report unusual wildlife sightings or behavior call the Arizona Game and Fish Department or the appropriate county community health services department.