A rogue beaver struck terror into the heart of a man making his way home late at night in the Latvian city of Daugavpils, according to a local newspaper report picked up by Latvian Public Broadcasting. The man, identified only as Sergei, says the beaver ran out of some bushes and suddenly bit him. He fell over as he tried to fight the rodent off and was bitten again as he tried to get up. In what USA Today describes as a "Kafkian nightmare," Sergei phoned police as the beaver "held him hostage" and refused to let him get up, only to have his plea for help allegedly dismissed as a prank call.
Sergei managed to persuade an initially disbelieving friend to come to his rescue, but the friend was pulled over by police for speeding. Cops—after breathalyzing the friend—accompanied him to the scene and discovered he had been telling the truth about the hostile beaver. Animal welfare officers were called and the man's ordeal ended with him receiving 15 stitches, though the beaver is still at large. Latvia's TV.Net reports that authorities in Daugavpils are taking the incident seriously, though it is "quite difficult to choose the measures which should be taken" to prevent similar attacks by beavers, which can become increasingly aggressive when they seek out new homes in spring. (This man was killed by a beaver after he tried to take its photo.)