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A dog attacked by a bird of prey in the Eastern Townships

In Ascot Corner, in the Eastern Townships, the owner of a small dog had quite a scare at the beginning of the week after her animal, a five-month-old morkie, was attacked by a bird of prey early on Monday evening.

The incident took place near the home, which is located in a wooded area. The owner, Liliane Bilodeau, is used to letting little Chanelle roam the family grounds with little supervision. She did it with her other 16-year-old dog, who died last June.

On Monday evening, the lady was alerted by an unusual noise. On the doorstep, she saw that her little dog had been grabbed by a bird of prey before it abandoned its prey and fled.

After the incident, little Chanelle was in very bad shape. Four talon marks were visible on its body, three on its belly and one on its back. Morkie was quickly transported to a veterinary clinic in Sherbrooke, which took care of him. According to Liliane Bilodeau, the team took X-rays and made sure there were no breaks or perforations in the lungs.

Fortunately, little Chanelle is doing better and is already back home, but the owner is still affected by the event. She urges pet owners to be vigilant.

According to some experts, the raptor may be a great horned owl, a nocturnal bird that is part of the owl family.

“They don’t know the difference between farm animals and wild animals. […] It is often young raptors, the chicks born last spring, that sometimes find it difficult to hunt when winter comes. They are less experienced than adults,” explained Noémie Roy, director of the Godbout Birds of Prey Interpretation Center, who nevertheless wants to be reassuring, remembering that these incidents are isolated and occasional.

Birds of prey also rarely approach humans. The expert therefore goes there with this advice: “When you have an animal with you, when you take it outside, tie it on a leash, stay close to it. There is less chance that the raptor will attack him at this time. There will be greater fear [de la part de l’oiseau].”



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