VENETA, Ore. – There have been cougar sightings in the Veneta area.
The Lane County Sheriff’s Office said there may be two or three cougars in the area of East Hunter Road and Huston Road in west Lane County.
If you encounter a cougar:
- Cougars often will retreat if given the opportunity. Leave the animal a way to escape.
- Stay calm and stand your ground.
- Maintain direct eye contact.
- Pick up children, but do so without bending down or turning your back on the cougar.
- Back away slowly.
- Do not run. Running triggers a chase response in cougars, which could lead to an attack.
- Raise your voice and speak firmly.
- If the cougar seems aggressive, raise your arms to make yourself look larger and clap your hands.
- If in the very unusual event that a cougar attacks you, fight back with rocks, sticks, bear or pepper spray, tools or any items available.
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Deputies have notified the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Oregon State Police Fish and Wildlife Division. Warning signs have been posted in the area.
At this time, there are no reports of cougars approaching people. So far, the cougars have only been seen at night. Daytime sightings near residential areas are more concerning, deputies said.
If you see a cougar in the Veneta area, call 541-682-4150 and press 1. If it’s an emergency, call 911.