By Michael Christianson
Raising three goats has been a new experience for John Cox of Dinorwic. He has had them for almost a year and he says it has been a learning experience. Something he never expected was to have the mother goat fighting a lynx inside his living room.
On March 3, Cox left his home and set out to pack down a trail for fishing later in the day. His 15-year-old daughter Kelsay was up in her room, home sick from school for the day. Cox returned home and was downstairs when he received a call on his cell from the house phone, it was his daughter Kelsay. He answered and wondered why she was calling him. She asked where he was and he said downstairs and asked again why she was calling him. She told him there was a lynx attached to their goat Stella.
Cox raced upstairs to see what his daughter was witnessing and sure enough there was Stella trying to horn this big cat that has its mouth wrapped around her throat. The goat was hemorrhaging blood.
These goats are like pets to the Cox family, they come to the house, they are friendly and they are used to the family. The goats sometimes walk up to the house and poke their heads in the door. All of this was racing through Cox’s head as he ran to the gun cabinet and spun the lock open. Adrenaline was running high and he had a hard time getting the lock open. With the rifle in hand he raced over to the door, contemplating that he might lose Stella. That’s when everything got even more frantic.
“I open the door and just as I did that Stella sees me at the door and starts charging towards the door and bursts the door open runs inside my living room and now the two of them are like a bar brawl going on inside my living room,” said Cox. “She’s kicking, blood’s flying, furniture is flying and I’m wondering what I should do at this point because now I have a loaded 303 and I don’t want to squeeze the trigger in the house.”
Unsure of the outcome of firing, Cox put the gun on safety and hit the cat with the butt of the rifle three times in the head, throwing all his weight behind the swings. The lynx finally let go and ran to the other side of the house. Cox was unaware that Kelsay was downstairs too at this point, unable to get back up to her room she ran to the kitchen. The lynx ran past her, eyeballing her on the way and bounced onto the sofa and then bounced towards the window. Trying to escape the lynx crashed into the glass and was left bleeding but still alive.
With the safety on again Cox held the gun like a baseball bat and knocked out the cat with one whack.
That’s when Stella the goat, still not convinced the fight is done raced over and picked up the cat by its horns and tossed it into the TV stand and began to hoof it. Cox took Stella back outside and when he returned the dazed cat was trying to get back up. Attaching a bayonet to his rifle Cox poked the disoriented cat around the kitchen island. Cox then told his daughter to open the front door and get back to her room. When the cat saw the light it started to walk towards it. When the lynx made it to the doorway Cox raised his gun and fired, the gunshot echoing within the house.
The battle within the house was followed by a new learning experience. Cox took the animal to his supervisor who has been a trapper for 30 years and they skinned it. He then took the animal and learned all about pinning and curing and pelts and animal care.
“Talk about post traumatic stress,” said Cox about what happened in the end. “The trapper left it at my house while I was away and I came back in and it was sitting over the coffee table and it sent a jolt of adrenaline through me because I thought it was back in the house.”