Father Fights Off Mountain Lion Attacking His Young Son

By author of The Realblog with Stephanie Mallory

Young boy suffers head injuries during attack on a California hiking trail

I bet you'd do anything to protect your child, even if it meant fighting off a dangerous predator. On Monday, a dad took on a mountain lion as it attacked his 4-year-old son, most likely saving his life. The attack occurred during a hike in San Diego's Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve.

Bystanders told ABC 10News the boy's father kicked the large cat and threw a rock to scare it away.

San Diego Fire-Rescue Department officials said emergency responders rescued the boy near the middle of the canyon. 

The boy, who was still conscious but suffering head injuries, was picked up by paramedics along Park Village Road and taken to Rady Children's Hospital in San Diego.

A spokesperson for the hospital told CNN that the child is in good condition and is expected to be released soon. His injuries were not life-threatening.

"It's pretty spooky because we've known there's a big cat down here," said Katherine Weadock, who lives in the area.

Security camera footage of a large mountain lion walking through a nearby backyard was recently posted to a neighborhood forum, but it's not been confirmed the footage is of the same cat that attacked the child.

"We've seen tons of deer down here so it's not unusual to have a mountain lion where there's deer, because that's their favorite food," Weadock said.

Signs warning of a mountain lion in the area have been posted at trailheads leading into the canyon, but the warnings are not stopping hikers, many of them families with young children, from venturing down the trails. Some of the hikers told ABC 10News they weren't worried about the mountain lion because they're used to living in an area where the big cats make their home.

This isn't the first time I've written about a parent fighting off a mountain lion to save a child. In April, I blogged about a mom who actually pried a mountain lion's mouth open to save her son

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