It was the epitome of a perfect summer day. Sun shining, kids in the pool, and not a care in the world for the Michaelis Family. Little did they know what they were about to encounter. A mountain lion was stalking their family without them knowing, but luckily, seven year old lab, Ella, caught wind of the situation and immediately was on guard.
"She was on point. She’s a hunting dog but she was just on point," said Crystal Michaelis. "She kept looking at the kids and then quickly looking back. She was just being very cautious and my daughter thought it was very concerning."
The kids ran inside for safety, but Ella stayed outside and guarded the house. “We opened the back door and found Ella just bloodied. There was blood all over the door and all over the patio,” said Michaelis. Ella had severe cuts on her head, nose, tongue, neck, and leg.
In total, she had 30 bites on her body and a concussion. All injures were from the shoulder up Crystal described, "Which means she never let down and stayed in that protective stance and defend it."
The family lives in the foothills of Cedar Hills where it is not uncommon to see mountain lions. Footprints were found in the yard, but no mountain lion has been spotted since the incident. "They’ve also seen deer wandering through this area and since deer are kind of the main food source for cougars, they will often follow where deer go," said Faith Jolley, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources Public Information Officer.
“She is our hero. Definitely. She can’t be replaced. That’s for sure,” said Michaelis. Ella has received treatment and is expected to make a full recovery from her injures.
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