Forty cows went on a stampede through a quiet California neighborhood in Pico Rivera last night.
The stampede happened just after 7:00 PM, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The agency’s press release says the animals escaped from a nearby meat packing facility where a gate was accidentally left open.
After more than an hour of roaming, the Los Angeles Mounted Patrol was called to the scene. The officers helped round up most of the animals and transport them back to the meatpacking facility.
According to the release, one animal charged at a family. An officer shot and killed the animal “to protect the family from further injury.” Members of the family were taken to a local hospital and treated for minor injuries.
As of Tuesday night, People Magazine reports that 38 of the animals were back at the facility. One is still on the loose.
The Today Show released footage of the incident on Wednesday morning:
Stampede Gone Wild
The event is the most recent example of animals making close contact with humans. Recently, a group of stampeding dolphins made contact with a group of whale watchers in Newport Beach. According to a report by ABC7, about 400 dolphins were in the pod.
Scientists are unsure about what makes dolphins stampede. Some theories suggest that the animals are evading a predator. Meanwhile, others say it is a way for them to catch up to food sources.
Over in Orange County, California, a mountain lion recently appeared climbing over fences and through the backyards of some residences. Authorities in Tustin, just outside of Santa Ana, said they received several calls from residents about the animal just after 8:30 in the morning.
It took nearly three hours for animal control to tranquilize the mountain lion. However, by 11:30 AM the animal was on its way back to the wild, ABC7 reports.
Wild Animal Safety
According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, there are three main ways to stay safe during a wild animal encounter.
First, be aware of your surroundings. Understand that animals may be present and could pose a threat to you and anyone with you.
The second way is to never feed wild animals. It may be cute to see a squirrel or rabbit take food from your hand. However, you don’t want to invite the risk of attracting predators.
Last but not least, you need to maintain a clean area. If you are out camping, that means picking up all of your trash and disposing of any food waste. The same rules apply in residential settings.
Any wildlife attacks need to be reported to 911 immediately.