45-year-old Dee Gallant was out on an evening walk with her husky Murphy just outside of Duncan, BC in the Cowichan Valley.
Just few miles into the woods, Gallant felt something was watching them and it turned out to be a cougar.
She has never seen one that close before so at first she was intrigued.
“I looked over to the right and there it was, I couldn’t make it out at first and thought ‘oh that is a strange color, that’s not a tree,'” she recalled.
She only realised what it was when the predator started moving towards them.
“Initially I wasn’t that scared, I remember thinking ‘cool that’s a cougar,’ and then it was ‘why is it still there?’ before turning into ‘oh my god it’s coming toward me, I need to make it stop,” she said.
She yelled when the cougar approached her and the animal stopped moving but did not back away.
Gallant waved her arms and yelled at the cougar saying things like “bad kitty” and “get out of here!” but it stayed.
The cougar “froze like a statue”, keeping its eyes fixated on her and Murphy.
Gallant decided then to turn on the loudest band she could think of on her phone: Metallica.
She played the heavy metal band’s 1991 hit, “Don’t Tread On Me,” as both a warning and a plea.
“I thought it was the noisiest thing on my phone that would probably scare it, that was also the message I wanted to convey to the cougar,” she explained.
As soon as the first notes of the song blared out, the cat ran away into the bush.
The incident lasted a total of five minutes — “I actually thought it was really cool that I got to see a cougar for so long,” she said. “I thought it was exciting.”
Gallant kept the song on loop for the rest of her hike, making sure to stay in the middle of the road, keeping Murphy close and continuing to stay alert.
After making it back home, Gallant attributes her safety to Metallica, saying she will now never leave home without them.
“I would love to contact them someday and tell James Hetfield that he saved my life,” she laughed.
There was also a recent study that showed that electronic music can dispel mosquitoes. -/TISG
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