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Creatures, Myths & Legends

'Beast of Dartmoor' attacks dog in Cornwall

By T.K. Randall
April 6, 2019 · Comment icon 35 comments

Is there a large cat prowling the wilds around Cornwall ? Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Rute Martins
Police in England have discovered the paw prints of a large exotic cat believed to be on the loose in the area.
Stories of panthers and other large cats roaming the British countryside have endured for years and are the basis for several legends including the Beast of Dartmoor and the Beast of Bodmin Moor.

Now however, authorities in Cornwall have found compelling physical evidence suggesting that these stories may have more truth to them than most people might realize.

23-year-old James Stephenson from the Cornwall village of Callington near Dartmoor raised the alarm recently after his dog was attacked by a creature that left large bleeding claw marks on its shoulder.

Prior to the attack he had reported seeing a large cat prowling around his garden.

"[Marley] had a big deep gash on his front left leg and one between his toes," he said. "On his left shoulder was a big black claw mark, as if a muddy claw had scraped down the side of him."
"The RSPCA said [the cat] had probably already caught something and was eating it in our garden and that's why it didn't take Marley; it was just protecting its food when it took him down."

When an officer investigated the scene, he found large feline paw prints on the ground.

"An officer attended the property and located the footprints in the garden," said a spokesman for Devon and Cornwall Police. "We called the RSPCA for advice and took a cast of the print which they confirmed was the pad of a large cat."

"Over the years, there have been a number of similar reports across Devon and Cornwall. There is no evidence that such animals represent a danger to humans. It is highly likely that they would avoid human contact and only represent a danger if trapped."

"If any animal is sighted it should not be approached."

Source: Telegraph | Comments (35)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #26 Posted by stereologist 5 years ago
Depends on the size of the cat and its ability to hunt. Large predators habituated to humans often stay close to human habitation. That led to the failure of the red wolves introduced to the Smokies. It was a problem for the gray wolves introduced into Yellowstone. A single predator without a lot of hunting experience is more likely to go for smaller prey and hunt as an opportunist.
Comment icon #27 Posted by Iilaa'mpuul'xem 5 years ago
I find dead sheep all the time on the moors that the farmers didn't know about... They must have a quota that they expect to die from normal circumstances or by accident. 
Comment icon #28 Posted by DanL 5 years ago
I am about as big a skeptic as anyone that I know.  I think that the human-caused global warming end of the world as we know it thing is the biggest hoax of ALL time. I don't take anything much at face value that anyone says. Unfortunately, most people fail to understand the difference between healthy skepticism and a paranoid refusal to even look at something and consider it. Some things I hear or see online or on TV are just silly to me. I'm not really interested in it enough to even check the facts out. HOWEVER, I also don't feel the compulsion to attack the people that are saying it.  If... [More]
Comment icon #29 Posted by Abilityperson 5 years ago
Thank you for admitting that you are a skeptic, and that you don't go off on ppl by saying lies wrong or show proof. Thank you for being honest and telling how it is. Just because some ppl don't believe and others do don't make either wrong. I found this site and thought it was interesting, tell your stories or you encounters. And most of the time I see ppl making fun starting arguments because they think they are right, or want proof of this or that. Not everyone has proof. If something happens to you fast or seen something that was out of the ordinary your not gonna think of oh better get pr... [More]
Comment icon #30 Posted by stereologist 5 years ago
The simple fact is that big cats have been found in the UK. I provided the evidence for that. Other posters have provided evidence for that. Here is another case in which the UK has possibly detected evidence for large cats. Maybe we need to review the evidence. The evidence is without question. Large cats have been found in the UK. The question is whether or not there is a large cat on the loose in this case. 1. Large cats are well documented 2. Large cats int he UK is well documented 3. This case involves some evidence: a mauled dog, missing cat... [More]
Comment icon #31 Posted by Saru 5 years ago
Thread cleaned Keep it civil please.
Comment icon #32 Posted by stereologist 5 years ago
The story is spreading with slightly different information. This last fact does not tell us how they were dispersed over time, but tells us that reports happen about 8 times a year on average. Farmers are not reporting lost livestock. Maybe this is a recent release or escapee.
Comment icon #33 Posted by stereologist 5 years ago
Arguments from personal ignorance are pretty funny. Addressing the claim of "We know the cat does not exist because ..." Not even sure who this is being addressed to. Let's examine this claim. 1. No scat. Not sure where this comes from since that was not discussed in the article. This must just be an unsupported guess. 2. No DNA. True at the moment. 3. Guy writing a book. No evidence presented. Will have to file this under anecdote.  4. "proof right there that he's a liar because he's a book promoter. " Never heard a skeptic say that. Scoffers do that all of the time. 5. No skeletal remains.... [More]
Comment icon #34 Posted by stereologist 5 years ago
Let's take a bigger look at this claim which we already know is a falsehood, the no witnesses claim. Maybe there were witnesses before the dog was mauled. That seems to be the case. Are these stories related? Is it possible that a dog that was torn up stuck in a fence or other constraining object became a dog injured by a large predator because of this story? That still does not explain the paw print. Then again there was the leopard that attacked sheep in Cornwall. [More]
Comment icon #35 Posted by openozy 5 years ago
I can't see what the big deal is about,I've seen a puma near Lithgow here in Oz.That size big cat would have no trouble finding food in most countries and are very elusive and intelligent.They could hardly be called a cryptid.

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