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Cheetahs attack woman at cat sanctuary

WELLINGTON, Florida (AP) — Authorities say the owner of a Florida wildlife sanctuary has been hospitalized after she was attacked by two cheetahs.

The Palm Beach County sheriff’s office says Judy Berens has about 40 puncture wounds to her extremities and back.

She was airlifted to Delray Medical Center, but it appears that her injuries are not life-threatening.

Berens owns and operates Panther Ridge Conservation Center, which provides homes for exotic cats.

She was conducting an exhibition with two male cheetahs in a cage when one became distracted by a ball being bounced outside. The cheetah moved toward the ball quickly and knocked her to the ground.

The cheetah then pounced on her and began biting and clawing her, said Gabriella Ferraro, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission spokeswoman. At some point, the other cheetah attacked her as well, Ferraro said.

Several people entered the enclosure and rescued her, authorities said.

Ferraro said the cheetahs remain on the property in cages.

Wildlife officers are investigating the attack, but so far it appears that there no violations and that no laws were broken, Ferraro said. E-mail to a friend

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Cheetahs attack woman at cat sanctuary – found here.

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March 30, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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