Runner kills cougar with bare hands after it attacked him

FORT COLLINS, Colorado -- Wildlife officials say a man who fought off a young cougar on a northern Colorado trail killed the animal by choking it.

The man was running alone near Fort Collins on Monday when the cougar attacked him from behind after the movement apparently triggered its hunting instincts.

The runner, whose name hasn't been released, fought off the cougar, hiked out of the area after Monday's attack and drove himself to a hospital. He suffered facial cuts, wrist injuries and puncture wounds to his arms, legs and back.

A spokeswoman for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Rebecca Ferrell, says the man told investigators he choked it and an examination of the animal confirmed that.

Ferrell says he did exactly the right thing by fighting back as hard as he could. Since he was just out for a run, he didn't have anything to help him other than "sheer will."

The agency isn't identifying the man because of its investigation. He was hospitalized but is expected to make a full recovery.

Cougar attacks are rare. Sixteen people have been injured and three killed by cougars in Colorado since 1990.

The cougar is also commonly known as the puma, mountain lion, panther or catamount.
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