The incident began shortly before 7 a.m. Tuesday when deputies were dispatched to I-10 on a report of a rowdy animal.
The sheriff's department says the initial report of an ostrich on the run turned out to be an emu, which lunged at deputies. One deputy suffered a cut pant leg, but was not seriously injured.
The sheriff's department says, "in a sad turn of events," the emu died while being transported to a shelter. The owner was not immediately identified.