A foursome at the Mohegan Sun Golf Course in Sprague, Conn., encountered an unexpected hazard at a fairway bunker near hole No. 7 on Thursday morning: a rabid bobcat. Authorities say the animal jumped on a man's back and his fellow golfers beat it with their clubs, the Hartford Courant reports. Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Sgt. Christopher Dwyer says the golfers "thought it was dead"—until it got up and ran away. The department says its police force "successfully tracked and humanely euthanized" the bobcat after the attack, and it tested positive for rabies at the University of Connecticut Medical Lab, the Day reports.
Dwyer says the golfer, who is in his 60s, was taken to a hospital with minor injuries to his back and legs. At 8am, around 30 minutes before the attack on the golfer, the same animal is believed to have attacked a horse near the golf course, WFSB reports. The horse suffered lacerations to the neck and eye and needed 16 stitches, owner Loree Osowski says, but was up-to-date with vaccinations and is expected to fully recover. Dwyer says bobcat attacks are extremely rare, and rabies is almost always involved. "In my 20 years with the DEEP I’ve only had three rabid bobcats," he says. "They are extremely aggressive, extremely vicious when they do have the rabies virus." (Read more bobcat stories.)