A Mad Deer Assaults Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Mullison
Thus reads the headlines in the Nov. 14, 1895 issue of the Saratoga Sun.
Continually, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department warns citizens to leave wild animals alone, as well as urging town folks not to feed them or make pets of local mule deer. However, several folks still want to make pets of the wildlife which reside in their yards.
Here’s a story from a November 1895 Wyoming weekly newspaper, which might make you change your mind the next time you are tempted to try to tame or make a pet of a “cute” wild animal.
Mr. J. H. Mullison is lying in bed this morning, bruised from head to foot, and a dangerous flesh wound in his left thigh, the result of an encounter with a mad buck deer yesterday afternoon.
W. B. Cowan, manager of the Pick Ranch, 10 miles below town, is the owner of some pet deer that now and then roam over the valley at will. Yesterday the buck, a fully developed deer, four or five years old, came up to the Mullison residence and kept Mrs. Mullison and the little children in the house all afternoon by his threatening demonstrations.
At four o’clock, Mr. Mullison and his 12-year-old son, George, returned from town and when within 50 yards of the house the deer attacked Mr. Mullison, who, to prevent being gored, caught him by the horns. Then ensued a fearful struggle for life which lasted for nearly an hour, in which the lives of Mrs. Mullison and George, who has come to the rescue, were involved. The ground for a hundred yards around gives evidence of the fight these people made to save themselves from being gored to death.
It took the united strength and desperation of both Mr. and Mrs. Mullison, holding the deer’s horns, while he mauled them, drug them and trampled on them, to keep him from goring them to death.
In the meantime, little George was making vain attempts to cut its throat. No one can imagine the agony those people endured during the fearful ordeal, and when, at last, they could get away from the infuriated animal, they were barely able to drag their bruised and bleeding bodies to the house.
Even the deer did not relinquish his purpose. He climbed on the roof of a cellar which adjoins the house and attempted to get in the window. Mr. Mullison, too weak from loss of blood and exhaustion to stand, emptied the contents of a shot gun into the deer’s head while sitting on the floor. The charge did not seem to bother the animal but little, for it only turned its head.
In the meantime, the little girls, Axie Mullison and Sadie Buehler, returned from school, and were with difficulty made to understand the situation and keep away from the house and out of danger.
While the deer was engaged in trying to get into the house, George slipped out on the opposite side, secured a horse and aroused the town. A dozen armed men went to the rescue, and a couple of bullets from the rifles of Constable M. L. Harbison and Johnson Doggett, fired at the same moment, killed the animal.
The clothes of Mr. Mullison, his wife and George were torn to rags, they are a mass of bruises from head to foot, and Mr. Mullison has a bad wound in the fleshy part of his left thigh from the deer’s horn, which just missed the femoral artery. Dr. Browder, who is in attendance, says the escape from a fatal would was a very narrow one.