Cougar enters home through dog door

DEXTER, Ore. -- A cougar entered a Dexter-area home through a dog door last month, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said.

The homeowner called her dog, and the cougar left the house, said Brian Wolfer with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The homeowner wasn't too concerned about the late October incident and planned to lock the pet door when not in use, Wolfer said.

However, Wolfer called it "kind of concerning" that a cougar would enter a home that way. He advised homeowners to lock doors and keep pet food secure, even inside the house.

Ed Thompson, who lives in the area, said the incident illustrates the conflict between rural Lane County residents and the cougar population.

"I'm afraid that many people don't understand the breadth of the cougar problem right in Lane County's backyards," Thompson said. "In the Dexter/Pleasant Hill area alone there have been well more than a dozen livestock killings including sheep (two of which were ours), goats and an alpaca just this year."