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06-08-2005, 04:37 PM
Bear Attacks Dog Inside Virginia House

By Associated Press

June 8, 2005, 12:12 PM EDT

HARRISONBURG, Va. -- A 200-pound black bear charged into a home and went on a 40-minute rampage, attacking a dog and damaging a basement guest room as it tried to claw its way out.

The dog, Rosie, was treated by a veterinarian for puncture wounds, but her owners were not injured.

Karla Irving said that when she let Rosie out Saturday night, she heard the dog barking and caught a glimpse of something small scurrying in the darkness. Her eyes followed a bear cub up a tree, and when she looked back down she saw more movement.

"I think the dog realized it before I realized it -- that there's a bigger bear out there and she's coming," Irving said.

Rosie, a 3-year-old blue heeler, dashed inside, followed closely by Irving and the bear. Irving tried to close the door behind her but the bear forced its way through, pinning her momentarily behind the door, and attacked Rosie.

Irving screamed to her 82-year-old mother, Margaret Vest, to close a door leading to the rest of the house, which is just outside Harrisonburg in northwest Virginia. Then she went back outside, closing the door behind her.

"I was obviously terrified, and so I ran back outside," Irving said Wednesday on ABC's "Good Morning America."

Rosie escaped the bear's jaws and fled, and Vest closed the door to the basement, trapping the bear inside.

Karla Irving's husband, David, who was taking a shower upstairs, heard the commotion and called 911. Sheriff's deputies let the bear out through a back door. It has not been seen since. Copyright 2005 Newsday Inc.