California man shoots bear that bit him, had ‘standoff’ with his dog

A black bear was euthanized in northern California after charging and biting a man who then shot the animal when it got into a “standoff” with his dog, authorities said Tuesday.

The man had let his dog outside in the Calpine neighborhood on Friday night when he noticed his pet immediately running away, the Sierra County Sheriff’s Office said.

Officials said the man stepped outside to check on his dog when a bear emerged from his neighbor’s yard and charged.

“Regrettably, the bear did not stop, and the Calpine resident sustained bites on his hand, wrist, and leg,” the sheriff’s office said.

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The injured man was able to escape the bear and retreat into his house, where he grabbed a shotgun.

“Fearing for his dog’s safety, the resident went outside and ultimately shot the bear while it was in a standoff with his dog,” the sheriff’s office said.

The victim then sought medical treatment at a hospital for his bite wounds. The sheriff’s office said the man did not require hospitalization.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife was called to investigate the bear attack in Calpine, a rural community about 60 miles west of Reno, Nevada, near the Tahoe National Forest.

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Wildlife officers located the wounded bear and euthanized the animal. The bear was taken to Sacramento for a necropsy and rabies testing.

Black bears are the only species of bear living in California today, as the last documented sighting of a grizzly bear occurred in 1924, according to the Fish and Wildlife website.

Officials said that most black bear attacks are defensive actions that the animal takes to protect its cubs or if the animal becomes startled or scared. 

Residents were encouraged to remain bear aware. If a bear is encountered, wildlife officials recommend keeping a safe distance and backing away slowly, letting the bear know you are there. Officials say not to run or make eye contact, to keep small children and pets close to you, make yourself look bigger and make noise.

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