Plano Man Fights Off Bobcat During Dog Walk

Bobcat sightings are not uncommon in North Texas. Viewers send in a few photos to NBC 5 every week.

However, we rarely hear about a person being attacked by a bobcat.

A Plano man says he had to fight off a bobcat while he was walking his dog at Hoblitzelle Park near Alma and Legacy drives.

“I guess right after is when I sat back and was like 'okay, I just fought a bobcat. That was interesting,'” said Logan Ortolf.

Ortolf says his 10-month-old Blue Heeler mix named Harley was off the leash at the park when the encounter happened.

The pair was walking along a creek at about 8:30 Monday night when Harley started barking uncontrollably at what turned out to be a bobcat in the bushes.

“It was about as big as her,” Ortolf said.

Worried Harley would become the bobcat's next meal, Ortorf says he stepped between the two animals.

“It jumped on her and I grabbed it by the back of the neck and tried to throw it into the woods, but it kind of latched onto my arm,” he said.

The entire encounter, Ortolf says, lasted five seconds.

“I had her by the neck and I kind of grabbed her by the back of the tail and flung it into a tree and then it ran off,” he said.

Photos show Ortolf's bloody forearm covered in claw marks. The injuries landed him in the emergency room.

“They gave me a bunch of shots as a precaution. I got 30 plus rabies sticks,” he said.

The wounds aren't stopping the pair from exploring their favorite park.

But Ortolf says Harley's days of playing off the leash are over.

“She'll stay on the leash from now on for sure or anywhere other than the dog park,” he said.

Animal experts say bobcat attacks are extremely rare.

A Plano man says he had to fight off a bobcat during a recent dog walk. Wildlife expert Marcus Stephens explains why bobcats attack and what pet owners can do to keep their animals safe.

Keeping your pet on a leash is the key to avoiding a bobcat encounter, according to Marcus Stephens with 911 Wildlife, a Plano-based company specializing in humane animal removal.

Stephens answers questions on the minds of many pet owners here.

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