DANSKIN, B.C. - A B.C. mother who fended off a cougar attacking her seven-year-old son says her boy is recovering well but doesn't want anyone discussing the ordeal in front of him.
Mary Metzler said her son, David Metzler Jr., needed 22 stitches to close a gash on his head after the cougar pounced on him.
Metzler's son was the second child in the province to be attacked by a cougar in less than a week.
She said her boy also has puncture wounds on his back and that his right eye was swollen shut immediately after the attack on New Year's Eve morning in the tiny central B.C. community of Danskin.
Metzler said her son initially had trouble sleeping and still doesn't want to hear any talk of what happened to him.
"If we want to discuss it with someone we go to another room," Metzler said Tuesday. "He asked us, `Please don't talk about it in front of me.' It makes it hard for him all over again."
Metzler heard her son's terrifying screams while she was volunteering to clean her kids' school during the winter break.
"When I opened the door and stepped out (the cougar) looked up at me and when it looked up it had Davie's tuque in its mouth," she said.
"I walked up to it with my scrub rag and smacked it in the face."
Metzler initially didn't know what kind of animal was mauling her son, who'd been sledding with his five-year-old sister.
"Now looking back, I realize what could have happened, how it could have ended, but right then I didn't think about that. I just knew something had to done and it had to be done quickly."
Metzler said the animal stared at her before taking off, leaving her to race to a nearby ferry terminal so she could make the 40-minute trek to a hospital in Burns Lake, B.C., with her injured son.
"It just so happened that a paramedic from our side of the lake was also on the ferry," she said, adding she received some assurance that her boy, who was bleeding from the head, would be OK.
"You do a lot of praying," she said of getting through the harrowing experience.
Just two days after the incident in Danskin, another boy was attacked by a cougar, outside a home in the southern B.C. community of Boston Bar.
Austin Forman, 11, was saved from a lunging cougar by the family's golden retriever.
An RCMP officer happened to be nearby at the time and was able to shoot the animal as it battled the dog named Angel.