Husband shoots wife to Kill Fox

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Dave P

Dec 24, 2002
North Florida
Husband shoots wife to kill fox

ASSOCIATED PRESS • July 25, 2008

MORRISTON — Authorities say a Levy County (FLA) man accidentally shot his wife while trying to hit a fox that had attacked her.

The couple told deputies they had spotted an animal in their yard Friday morning and went outside to see what it was. The fox bit the woman on the left leg and wouldn’t let go, so she told her husband to get a gun.

The man fired a .22-caliber rifle seven times, killing the animal but also hitting his wife in the lower right leg.

The woman was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

The dead fox will be tested for rabies, but authorities say the results won’t be available until next week.
Line of fire is important.
This is an important thing for people to remember for defensive purposes.

It is just as important if a criminal attacks someone. You need to do your best to position yourself so that the background is not the person you are defending.
It takes a little more thought than just 'point at the threat and start shooting'.
No solution?

Good lord. What is the right thing to do in such a situation?

Shooting's a terrible idea...

Not shooting's a terrible idea...

Using a knife is a terrible idea...

Using a baseball bat is a terrible idea...

Grabbing the beast is a terrible idea...

Throwing boiling water on the fox is a terrible idea...

Hmm, water....would throwing some water or other liquid have been effective in getting the fox to let go? Or maybe some pepper.....

Woman injured in fox attack
By Lise Fisher
Sun staff writer

July 25, 2008 at 3:31 p.m.

A Levy County man accidentally shot his wife Friday morning when he tried to fend off a fox that had attacked the woman, deputies reported.

The animal was killed and will be tested for rabies due to its unusual behavior, said Levy County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Lt. Evan Sullivan.

Test results won’t be available until next week, but authorities are advising anyone who comes in contact with a wild animal exhibiting strange behavior to leave it alone and contact law enforcement.

Officers were called to an accidental shooting in the 3000 block of SE 18th Ave. in the Morriston area at about 10:30 a.m., the Sheriff’s Office reported.

A couple at the address had spotted an unknown animal in their yard and went out to investigate, Sullivan said. But, once outside, the animal attacked the woman, biting her left leg. The woman couldn’t get away from the animal and told her husband to get a gun.

The man tried to shoot the fox with a .22-caliber rifle, firing seven times. He killed the animal but also accidentally shot the woman in the lower right leg.

The fox, which was still attached to the woman’s leg, had to be pried off by paramedics on the scene, Sullivan said.

The woman was taken to Shands at the University of Florida and was in stable condition, Sullivan said.

The Levy County Environmental Health Department in Bronson will house the fox’s body before it is turned over to a lab in Tampa for rabies testing.

The Sheriff's Office listed the fox as a red female fox, but after reviewing a picture of the animal, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said it was a gray fox, which is more commonly found in the state.

No charges are pending in connection with the shooting, Sullivan said.
Weird, I think I would have just stomped on the thing... Running somewhere to fetch a gun would not have been my first instinct.
Running somewhere to fetch a gun would not have been my first instinct.

That is probably because, as Maslow suggests, you have other tools....

"I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail."

--A. Maslow--

Once the beastie has his teeth in the leg and won't let go, it's rather difficult to justify the use of a gun to try to solve the problem....
I would think a taser would have shocked her too, but I would have tried it. LOL. Well maybe some mace or red pepper before hand. Sprinkle or drop either into that fox's nose or facial area, I bet it would have let go.
With a potentially rabid animal to deal with, you probably don't want to damage/destroy the head. It'll be needed for subsequent testing to determine whether or not the animal really is rabid. So the head should probably be ruled out as a target, even though the newer rabies vaccines are less of a problem than the older series of injections that were necessary in case of exposure.

And you definitely want to keep your head about you any time it's necesary to employ a firearm in close proximity to the victim of any kind of attack. Hitting the victim is not what you want to do. Unfortunately most shooters don't ever really consider how they would employ a firearm at a range of 0 yards. It's something to think about. You not only have to consider the 'approach' path of your projectiles, but their possible exit path as well.

In a case like this, firing with the muzzle in contact with the fox, somewhere immediately behind the shoulders, with the barrel angled to assure safe exit (if there is an exit) might be a better approach. Of course it is difficult to predict what circumstances might be presented in any such attack, and those specific circumstances would have to be dealt with in the event such a thing happened again.

And they do happen- rabid foxes are enough of a threat here in SE NC that my wife refers to her pocket pistol as her Fox Gun...

but authorities are advising anyone who comes in contact with a wild animal exhibiting strange behavior to leave it alone and contact law enforcement

With a little thought regarding society today, you have to wonder how many people can identify "odd" behavior of an animal.

Heck, you have to wonder how many people can ID an animal.

BTW....Two fox attacks posted on THR in one month...One would think we should be calling our congress-critters to ban foxes.
A fox is about the size of a just kick the critter like you were trying a forty yard field goal! No way it could hold on!

If not a kick, then get close, grab its ears, a .45 between the eyes...done deal!

If it has its teeth sunk into your wife's leg, kicking or shooting it between the eyes is a not what I was think to do. Stomping it would probably be my first choice. A shovel or good club would be the next option.
Sounds like a good reason to own a good 91/30 with a bayonet, I would think that will make the fox let go and NOT be able to latch onto you, which I am fairly sure it would do if you stomped or tried to choke it.
Remains to be seen which creature was shot accidentally...
Claymore, you may have something there with the 91/30 bayo idea. Of course to could just load a blank and cook it off.
the new Ruger .327mag was invented for this kind of problem.

How ever, if I ever get married, my wife will also be a Fox!
muzzle pointed down right between shoulders of animal, pull trigger spine is destroyed, head is undamaged as already mentioned anytime an animal attacks ya got two things that must not happen #1 do not destroy the head #2 ya do NOT want it to escape it will be needed so it can be tested, attempting hand to hand combat will result in two victims instead of one in most cases, Wild animals have an amazing tolerance for pain, kicking the animal as mentioned VERY BAD idea, now the victim has went from puncture wounds to torn muscles and tendons arterial damage from the canines which are locked into your wifes leg....... I'm still tryin to get the use of my left thumb after my own dog bit me following an accident resulting in his death (I accidentally ran him over with a 1/2 ton suburban crushing his rear spine, pelvis etc).. I went to comfort the 85lb chow that had been my best friend for over a decade and he instinctively grabbed my hand, his canines completely penetrated my left hand one of them going through the muscles and tendons of my left thumb.... the docs have reiterated several times that I'm very fortunate it was simply punctured and not ripped.... he released after about 10 seconds as soon as he realized it was me and I didn't panic and attempt to jerk my hand away..... because of that I will be able to use my thumb again after it heals.... that was on the 3rd of this month, still very limited movement but getting better
No way it could hold on!

I don't think you understand the grip power involved. Did you catch the part about how they had to pry it's DEAD jaws off? Under the circumstances there's really no perfectly safe way to stop the attack. You have to do your best and take your chances.
I think this guy did about all he could do.

A gray fox weighs about 10-15 lbs., the size of some domestic terriers. That size animal can do a lot of damage. Now imagine that thing has RABIES for pete's sake. It's not your average animal; it's supercharged.
Everybody says to kick it, punch it, stomp it, shoot it with a .45, etc.
Now visualize the scene as it plays out. A rabid animal has your wife by the leg. She is not going to be standing still waiting patiently for you to get the fox off her. She is probably doing the cha-cha (or the fox trot) at warp speed and making more than a little noise. The fox is also not helping matters much at all. If you've ever seen a Jack Russell Terrier playing or working at full tilt boogie that probably doesn't hold a candle to the way a rabid fox can move. So what do you do>
Prying the jaws loose isn't a good idea. You're gonna get bit. The only thing worse than somebody getting rabies is two somebodies getting rabies (oh, well, then maybe some of the zombie story writers here could get some mileage out of this thing.)
Using a shovel/hoe/ax/hammer is a bad idea. With that much motion you might take a huge chunk out of your wife's leg or break a bone.
Kicking/stomping would not be real effective. You've got two mammals boogying so far, now add another human trying to navigate this mess on one leg. If you do get a game-winning field goal style kick in, you've probably caused the fox to rip out a piece of your wife's leg. I scent disaster on the wind.
.22 is about right. If we could see the shot distribution on the fox's body I think we'd find holes all over it. He was trying for a kill shot; with that much action it's hard to hit anything, even point blank
A .22 hole in the leg is bad. Two .22 holes is worse. A jagged muscle tear is a lot worse. A .45 hole is awful.
He did ok.

RESTORER IS RIGHT I have a Maltez dog and we wonder why its head doesnot come of when he shakes his toys.both of them moving is going to make it dificult to aim.try getting a wild cat when he spots you with agun.I know!:rolleyes:
Simular situation

Friend of mine was bitten on the calf of her leg by a bobcat in a New Mexico state park, so no guns around because they weren't allowed. The bobcat was squirming all over the place and she was squirming all over the place and all anybody had available for weapons were fishing poles. Finally got cat pulled off and it went up a tree. One of the other campers, a stranger to us, got the ranger but he didn't have a gun either, had to go get a retired ranger who had a cabin in the park to come with his shotgun. It was rabid and she had to go through the shots.

That woman was lucky he was only using a 22, trying to get an aimed shot in those circumstances is extremely difficult. Another example of what happens when the adrenaline goes up during an emergency. Even if he had been Mr. Cool Calm and Collected it still would have been a difficult shot and it was his wife he was trying to help, that doesn't do anything good for the adrenaline levels. I hope for her sake the bullet didn't cause any serious damage and I hope she is okay. I suspect even if its not rabies they might find distemper or something else wrong with that fox.
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