It’s not every day that a grandmother kills a rabid bobcat with her bare hands. DeDe Phillips walked out to her front yard in Hart County, Ga., around dinnertime intending to take a picture of a new bumper sticker on her truck, reports the Athens Banner-Herald and the Hartwell Sun. But her plans changed when she spied a bobcat. She took a picture of the cat, and then it “took two steps and was on top of me. ... It came for my face,” she recalls. She was reluctant to call for help because her 5-year-old granddaughter was in the house. “I thought, ‘Not today,’” she says. “There was no way I was going to die.” She grabbed the animal by the throat and throttled it until it went limp.
Phillips, 46, then yelled for help, and when her son arrived, she released her grip on the cat. Her son stabbed the cat several times, but it was likely already dead. Phillips suffered a broken finger as well as deep cuts and scratches to her hands, chest, and legs. Phillips knows something about bobcats because her father-in-law was once a bobcat trapper. “They go for your jugular,” she tells the Banner-Herald, “because when they can get the vein you’re dead in a couple of minutes.” Phillips has begun a round of shots for rabies. And what did the bumper sticker say? “Women who behave rarely make history.” (These animal rescuers found out that the kittens they had rescued were actually bobcat cubs.)