A 70-year-old Massachusetts woman squared off against a presumably rabid raccoon that attacked her while she was hanging Christmas lights in her own yard — and lived to tell the tale.
What are the details?
Lancaster resident Donna Sanginario was putting up festive holiday lights around the exterior of her home when she said a 40-pound raccoon leapt toward her face and latched onto her arms with its claws and jaws, WHDH-TV reports.
“It looked at me and started jumping up at me, so I put my hand over my face,” she recalled of the moment she crossed paths with the raccoon. “[W]e were both screaming so loud it was unbelievable. He wouldn’t let go for anything, he just attached … I got this big thing over my head, I was like ‘Someone help me!’ … I really thought I was going to die.”
Sanginario said that she fought against the animal attack for at least five minutes before the raccoon began to tire itself out.
Sanginario said that when she was able to get an edge over the angry beast, she placed it in a tight headlock. Hearing its bones cracking, she presumed that the animal — which had fallen silent by that point — was dead and that the attack was over.
When she released the animal, she was shocked to see it simply walk away.
Horrified and hurt, Sanginario drove to the hospital, where she was found to have broken ribs in addition to a variety of puncture wounds, cuts, and bruises. She also received a series of shots since the raccoon was apparently rabid.
“I will always out here have a bat or something from now on,” she told the station.
Sanginario shared her disturbing story in a Facebook post which read, “This past Wednesday around 4 pm. I was putting some lights around bushes in front of my home. I could hear this strange noise coming from the street. I turned around to see what the noise was and I was staring at a huge raccoon about 10 feet away.”
“Before I could do anything it jumped at me,” Sanginario’s post continued. “Worst nightmare of my life. Both me and the raccoon were screaming so loud. As I was screaming for help he fell off my arm but jumped right back on me to continue to attack.”
“After somehow tumbling to the ground I got him in a headlock and wouldn’t let go,” she recalled. “As he was biting me I could hear bones breaking in its neck. He finally stopped screaming so I got off him. He got up and walked away. Can you believe it? I really thought I was going to die. It’s been a rough couple days but a weekend with my girlfriends is helping take the pain and trauma away.”
Raccoon attacks 70-year-old Massachusetts woman as she was putting up Christmas lights