Scripps Ranch residents held "hostage" by bobcat

Posted at 10:18 PM, Apr 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-22 12:20:29-04

SCRIPPS RANCH, Calif. -- North San Diego County families feel like they are being held hostage by a bobcat that has been living between homes in the Scripps Ranch , protecting its three young cubs.

The bobcat attacked one of Bri Hurtado's dogs, Kobi.

“We only saw 2 puncture wounds, so we thought it was a snake,” Hurtado said. 

However, with 13 puncture wounds, the vet knew right away something much bigger was at play here.

“It's kind of scary to know that it's so close to us, but I know it won't hurt us, but it's still kind of scary that it might hurt the dogs,” Hurtado said. 

Bobby Caughey knew something was wrong when his two dogs made a beeline in his backyard in Scripps Ranch.

“I came outside, and there's a bobcat face looking right back at me,” Caughey said.

The bobcat was fiercely protecting her three cubs. But Caughey is also trying to protect his family.

“At this point, we're kind of in a position where we're really being held hostage by this particular animal,” Caughey said. 

His two young children cannot play on their swing set and his dogs cannot go out unsupervised.

“We're living on a sense of edge because we know that if it's attacked one dog, then potentially, to protect its cubs, it's going to attack when necessary.”

Hurtado and Caughey say they are not getting any help from wildlife officials.

"Our neighborhood has left multiple messages with multiple agencies and nobody seems to want to respond to the fact that in this very urban area, a bobcat has taken up residence," Hurtado said. 

Hurtado's mother says wildlife officials emphasized to her that it is illegal to trap and relocate bobcats.