Angry momma bear attacked dog owner

brown bear on brown wood
Photo by Janko Ferlic on Pexels.com

Dog, treed bear cub, holiday pumpkins and a not-so-bear-proof dumpster all played role in Stratton bear attack

Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department game wardens and biologists have released additional details on the bear attack on November 2 in Winhall.  A preliminary release on this incident incorrectly identified the town where the attack took place as Stratton.

Sarah Dietl of Winhall, 43, reported that she was attacked by a bear in the yard of her condominium complex near Stratton Mountain Resort after letting her and her partner’s dog into the yard that evening. 

Dietl described that the dog, a Shih Tzu, treed a bear cub in the yard immediately upon leaving the house.  She described that the cub’s mother subsequently charged her, knocked her to the ground, and began to maul her.

Dietl’s partner reported that he heard Dietl yell for help and intervened.  He was able to separate Dietl from the bear and bring her inside the condominium. 

When the couple attempted to open the door for their dog, they described that the bear charged the door but that they were able to prevent it from entering.  The couple then called 911.  Winhall Police and Rescue responded first to the scene and game wardens from the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department arrived at 10:05 pm.

Dietl was transported to Southwestern Vermont Medical Center in Bennington late on November 2.  She was treated for non-life-threatening injuries to her head, hand, and side, and discharged in stable condition on November 3.

Game wardens searched the neighborhood for the bear, its cubs, and the couple’s dog after arriving at the scene.  They concluded their initial search at 1:20 am on November 3 without success.

“Before letting pets out at night, I would urge Vermonters to light their yards and make plenty of noise to allow wildlife in the area time to move on,” said Game Warden Kyle Isherwood.  “Along with securing food that could attract wildlife into a developed area, steps like this are important for the safety of people and wildlife.”

Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department game wardens and biologists returned to the scene at 10 am on November 3 to continue the investigation.  They learned that a bird feeder had been present outside the condominium complex until mid-October, that a bear-proof dumpster on the property was damaged and not being used properly, and that a female bear with cubs had been seen regularly in the area throughout the summer and fall.  They also found multiple decorative pumpkins outside of the complex that showed signs of having been fed on by bears.

“Bear attacks in Vermont are rare, but it is absolutely critical that Vermonters take every step to secure food sources that might attract bears into close proximity with people,” said Wildlife Biologist and Black Bear Project Leader Jaclyn Comeau.  “Increasingly bold and high-risk behavior from bears is due to Vermonters’ failure to take the proactive steps needed for safely coexisting alongside a healthy black bear population.  This failure puts both people and bears in danger.”

The couple’s dog was found uninjured.  Attempts by game wardens and biologists to locate the bear are ongoing.

Categories: Outdoors

5 replies »

  1. In Alaska, dog owners are encouraged never to let their dogs off the leash or run loose – as if they scare up an angry momma bear or a bear guarding a carcass – the bear will chase the dog back to the owner – yum yum.

    Apex predators will be apex predators.

    Just being and doing who they are and God meant them to be.

    • “Sarah Dietl of Winhall, 43,” !!!!!!!!!!!! How old is her partner? How old is Game Warden, Kyle Isherwood? Huh. Seems only important to note the age of the first female in the story? And is age important to this story??? Who writes like this anymore?

  2. I hope the mama and cub are safely away from clueless humans. And glad no one was seriously hurt. Hope the bears won’t be, by the search party.

  3. You can’t fight Mother Nature. The maternal instincts of the bear are completely natural and are there to ensure the survival of the species.

    This type of protective behavior when witnessed in parents is applauded and mothers particularly are often referred to lately as “Mama Bears” when fiercely protecting their own offspring from the often-vile attacks perpetrated by those enforcing the radical left’s transgender policies in public schools, as but one example. Realities aside, very glad that the woman involved wasn’t seriously injured.

    Proceed cautiously when living in the same environs as large woodland creatures; we share this earth with them and need to be responsible and respectful at all times.

  4. A dog let to run off-leash becomes part of the natural world and hence the food chain, and that applies to public land as well as your own property. No bear should ever be put down for defending it’s young…and no human should ever be attacked by leftists/democrats for defending their children from their harmful influence.

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