Owners heartbroken after mountain lion kills family cats

Nov 2, 2023, 6:30 PM | Updated: 7:40 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — A Cottonwood Heights family says a mountain lion attacked and killed their pet cats Monday.

John Stevens said a mountain lion seen on camera in their neighborhood killed the two cats.

He’s sharing his story so no one else has to experience the pain they’re going through.

“The cats just never came home, and they always come home,” Stevens said while scrolling through pictures of his pets. “Zeke had a very warm personality”.

The photos reminded John of the memories shared with his cats.

“Daisy was 14, and we had got her when my youngest son, now who is 15, was only one, “ he said.

Stevens considered the cats members of the family.

“They did their business outside, but they came inside all the time and were with us, so it was a really healthy balance that we had with them,” he said.

He said they were indoor and outdoor cats.

When they didn’t come home last Monday, the family was worried.

“Once they were both missing for a good day or so, it really started to concern us,” Stevens said.

A neighbor’s camera showed video of a mountain lion lurking near their street.

“This particular mountain lion crept up the creek. We have a creek in our backyard and, let’s just say that the animals had gone through a struggle,” he said.

Stephens said his wife and his son found the remains of their cats. “It was quite a horrific scene.”

He says a piece of their family is gone forever.

“It’s very heartbreaking to see your kids have to suffer through an unforeseen death,“ he said.

Stephens said he reported the attack to the city, animal control, and the Division of Wildlife Resources, which manages Utah’s cougar population.

He said, “They were empathetic. They said, ‘Well, we cannot come up unless you have the animal in sight.’”

He said he doesn’t want anyone else to lose their pet the way his family lost theirs.

“Hopefully, people will think twice before they go to bed, especially if they have cats,” he added

According to Wild Aware Utah, cougars hunt at dawn and dusk, so it’s best to bring in your pets at night. They also recommend installing motion-sensitive lighting to keep them away.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

With temperatures soaring, so does the chance for heat exhaustion and heat stroke to set in....

Karah Brackin

Beating the heat as record-breaking temperatures move in

With temperatures soaring, so does the chance for heat exhaustion and heat stroke to set in.

10 minutes ago

Kelby Diston hydrates while working on the I-215 Renewed reconstruction project in Salt Lake City o...

Adam Small, KSL NewsRadio

Triple-digit temperatures expected along the Wasatch Front

The recent heat wave is about to hit its peak, as the Wasatch Front reaches triple-digit temperatures Wednesday.

1 hour ago

(Nevada Highway Patrol)...

Eliza Pace

Woman killed in Nevada crash on US Highway 6

A woman was killed in a crash on U.S. Highway 6 at mile marker 72 on June 5. 

1 hour ago

The 2002 Olympic cauldron at the Olympic and Paralympic Cauldron Plaza at the University of Utah in...

Lisa Riley Roche

Utah is now one vote away from hosting the 2034 Winter Games. Here’s what just happened

Utah’s bid to host the 2034 Winter Games is headed to a final vote by the International Olympic Committee in July.

2 hours ago

The old Sears location in Salt Lake City is pictured Tuesday. Intermountain Health unveiled new ren...

Carter Williams, KSL.com

Intermountain Health unveils what it wants to do with old Salt Lake Sears block

Intermountain Health unveiled new renderings of its planned "urban hospital" during a Salt Lake City meeting on Tuesday, but it also faced pushback.

2 hours ago

Salt Lake City police releaseD a photo of a man wanted in connection to the June 3 theft of a Lambo...

Josh Ellis

Police ask for public’s help to locate suspect who stole $230K Lamborghini from SLC airport

Police are asking for help to locate a man who allegedly stole a Lamborghini from the Salt Lake airport this month.

5 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light up your home with these top lighting trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for hassle-free computer repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Owners heartbroken after mountain lion kills family cats