PORTER, Maine — A Maine woman was bitten by a bear in her backyard while heroically defending her pet dog, requiring a visit to the hospital for stitches, officials said Friday.
Lynn Kelly, 64, was tending her garden in Porter when her beloved dog took off into the woods barking at something on Friday.
The dog soon returned with a black bear following closely behind him, according to Mark Latti, spokesperson for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
In an incredibly brave act of self-defense and protection of her pet companion, Kelly stood firmly and made herself appear larger than she actually was – a recommended action in a black bear encounter.
Even more impressively, however, instead of slowly retreating as is also recommended by experts when faced with such predators; Kelly proceeded to confront the bear head-on!
As if that weren’t courageous enough on its own, when the animal charged at her Kelly punched it in the nose! Unsurprisingly after this remarkable feat of bravery, the determined animal briefly latched onto Kelly’s wrist causing an injury that necessitated treatment at Memorial Hospital in North Conway, New Hampshire, where she received stitches for the wound.
It’s rare for someone to be bitten by a bear in Maine despite having one of the largest black bear populations on the eastern seaboard yet encounters with bears can still be reduced through smart preventative measures such as removing or securing bird feeders, garbage cans/bags and pet food from public areas – all things that attract bears’ attention.