Mountain lions don't attack humans often; such encounters occurred about 13 times between 1986 and last year, the Los Angeles Times reports. But the father of a 6-year-old in Cupertino, Calif., says one recently "came out of nowhere and attacked" his son. "A 6-year-old child in no way can defend himself against a mountain lion. He was very lucky he was with his parents," says a fish and wildlife official.
The boy is now being treated for puncture wounds and his life isn't in danger, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Today, authorities will send hounds on the animal's trail. The creature will be killed for public safety reasons if its DNA matches that of the saliva found on the boy's clothes. Local hiking trails have been closed in the area. (Read more mountain lion stories.)