A black bear grabbed a German Shepherd dog by its throat and attacked it at a resident’s backyard in Lower Paxton, Pennsylvania, on Wednesday night.

Matt Reigle, the owner of the five-year-old dog named Sig, said the canine was let out of the house by his son. The boy had heard scuffling noises from the backyard and called out for Sig in the dark.

Sig returned home with several bloody, puncture wounds to his neck and was rushed to a veterinarian. It had to undergo three hours of surgery to repair a four-inch gash and other bite wounds. The dog was brought back to the home later.

While there were no witnesses to the encounter, the veterinarian said the wounds suggest the bear had the dog by its throat and that Sig was extremely lucky to be alive after the terrifying encounter with the animal.

A few hours after the incident, Reigle encountered the bear's cubs in his driveway and located the mother about 15 feet away.

 “I found myself between two bear cubs and the momma bear was in the bushes grunting at me,” said Reigle. He made loud noises, and wild gestures at the bear and even threw items at it, but the animal didn't move.

“She’s not afraid of people,” he said, “What concerns me is she got into a fight with an 80-pound German Shepherd and two hours later, she’s back at the same spot.”

Reigle and his wife Lindsey, believe the same group of bears were in their backyard the previous night, going through the trash cans filled with bird feed.

“Bears sometimes do hang out in neighborhoods, are frequent visitors to neighborhoods, and it’s almost always because there’s food available in that neighborhood,” said Travis Lau, communications director for the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

Lau believes that the same bears were spotted a mile away about two weeks ago and were monitored until they returned to the woods.

Michael Doherty, Pennsylvania game warden, said he plans to set up a trap using donuts in the area to capture them and have them transported out of the residential area.

black-bear-1901957_640 Black bear Photo: Pixabay