Rabid bobcat euthanized after attacks on golfer, horse

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Sprague — Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Environmental Conservation Police "successfully tracked and humanely euthanized" a bobcat Thursday after the animal reportedly attacked a golfer and a horse at the Mohegan Sun Golf Course, DEEP said in a news release.

A bobcat attacked a horse about 8 a.m. Thursday and a golfer about 8:30 a.m., DEEP said.

Results obtained from the University of Connecticut Medical Lab late Thursday afternoon indicated the bobcat tested positive for rabies, DEEP Deputy Commissioner Susan Whalen said. She added that the golfer and horse owner have been notified.

Philip Krick Jr., vice president and general manager of the club at 7 Dows Lane in Baltic, said a foursome was near a fairway bunker on hole No. 7 when the cat attacked. Krick said they told him the victim hit the bobcat with a golf club nearly a dozen times.

DEEP said the golfer was taken to The William W. Backus Hospital in Norwich for treatment of lacerations. Krick said the golfers, whom he declined to identify, were shaken but the victim "will be all right."

According to DEEP, the horse was being treated by a veterinarian for lacerations to the neck and eye, and the euthanized bobcat was taken to UConn Medical Lab for testing. DEEP believes this bobcat is the one involved in both attacks.

"Bobcats are shy, secretive animals; attacks on humans are extremely rare," DEEP said. The last reported bobcat incident was in Bozrah in August 2014, and that animal tested positive for rabies, which is rare for bobcats to contract.

DEEP recommends that anyone encountering a bobcat keep their distance, make noise and back away.

Day Staff Writer Erica Moser contributed to this report.

l.boyle@theday.com

b.hallenbeck@theday.com

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