A Florida man walked away with just a few scratches after defending his dogs from a full-grown black bear.
Last weekend the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission posted a 38-second Ring doorbell video showing a Daytona Beach resident facing off with a bear.
In the video, the man (who was not identified by the FWC) can be seen on his porch with his two dogs when one begins barking at the door. Then the bear appears. According to the FWC, the man thought the bear was another dog.
“Thinking the animal was another dog and not a bear, the man moved towards it to protect his dogs and the bear reacted,” said the FWC. “The man was able to get the bear to leave by making loud noises and quickly moving a bench in front of his porch door. Luckily the man’s injuries were not life-threatening and his dogs were not injured.”
Per usual, the video was shared by the FWC as a teachable moment for the public. While bear encounters are rare, the agency offered a few tips:
- Don’t run; running may trigger a chase response. Back away slowly in the opposite direction and wait for the bear to leave. - From a safe distance, make loud noises to scare away the bear.
- Give the bear a clear escape route (do not corner it).
- If the bear makes contact with you, fight back aggressively.
- If your dog and a bear make contact, make noise and use bear spray or a water hose to try and break them up.
If you do encounter a bear, you can call the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-FWCC (3922).
This post originally appeared at Creative Loafing Tampa Bay.
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