The San Mateo Sheriff's Office is warning residents to lock their doors and windows, after a mountain lion entered the bedroom of an area home and took off with the family dog as a woman and child slept nearby.
According to a press release sent by the Sheriff's Department, the incident occurred Monday in a home in Pescadero, a San Mateo County town two miles east of State Route 1 and Pescadero State Beach. SMSD writes:
An adult witness told deputies she and a child were sleeping in a bedroom with their 15 pound Portuguese Podengo (breed), at the foot of their bed.
This bedroom has French doors that were partially left open to let their dog out. At about 3:00 am the dog began barking aggressively which woke up the adult witness.
The witness states when she looked up at the French doors she saw a shadow of an animal enter the room, take the small dog from the bed and then walked out.
The witness used a flashlight to look for her dog and saw large wet paw prints at the entrance to the bedroom.
Investigators subsequently discovered paw prints that appeared to be those of a mountain lion nearby.
The woman who called police is named Vickie Fought, NBC Bay Area learned. Fought says she was sleeping in the same room as her 12-year-old daughter and their little dog, named Lenore.
She says the door was only "open a crack" but that was apparently enough to allow the mountain lion to enter.
Fought said they woke up in the middle of the night when their dog, Lenore, started barking.
"That's when I saw what I thought was our bigger dog walking in," Fought said.
Seconds later, Fought said Lenore, a 15-pound Portuguese Podengo, went silent.
Fought said she thought Lenore finally recognized the bigger dog. That was until, Fought added, "I saw the lion walk back out the door."
Fought says the bed in which she was sleeping was only a foot away from the door, close enough that she could see that "As it walked down our path, I thought, 'That looks a lot like a lion.'"
The SMSD says that this incident is a reminder to "lock and secure your home’s doors and windows," and refers those with more questions on mountain lion behavior to this website.