A Californian mum has been hailed as a hero after fighting off a mountain lion with her bare hands to save her son.
The five-year-old boy was playing close to his Calabasas home when the young beast spotted he was alone.
The 30kg lion pounced on the easy prey and dragged him about 45 yards from his home.
California department of fish and wildlife spokesperson, Captain Patrick Foy, explained how the mum was inside the home when she heard something happening outside.
There's no doubt she would have been horrified at what she saw and leapt into action.
Captain Foy said: "The true hero of this story is his mom because she absolutely saved her son's life.
"She ran out of the house and started punching and striking the mountain lion with her bare hands and got him off her son.
"This mom's an absolute hero who saved her son's life, there's no question about it."
The lion eventually let go and ran off.
The brave mum took her son to hospital, where doctors confirmed he sustained significant injuries to his head and upper torso.
Thankfully, his condition has stabilised and he's receiving treatment at a hospital in Los Angeles.
The parents also called wildlife services, who quickly descended on the Calabasas home to see if they could find the animal culprit.
Captain Foy explained how an officer discovered a mountain lion in the bushes nearby with its 'ears back and hissing'.
A spokesperson for the wildlife department said in a statement: "During a protocol clearing of the family's yard, the wildlife officer at the home discovered an aggressive mountain lion crouched in the corner of the property.
"Due to its behavior and proximity to the attack, the warden believed it was likely the attacking lion and to protect public safety shot and killed it on site."
About 20 minutes after they shot the lion, two more appeared. One was a fully-grown lion with a collar around its neck and the other was smaller and similar in size to the one believed to have attacked the boy.
The smaller one was tranquillised after the boy's mum confirmed the animal who attacked her son wasn't wearing a collar.
They did DNA tests on the lion shot dead and the one that was tranquillised and determined the former was responsible for the attack. The latter was later released.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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