ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska woman out for a walk with her dogs was repeatedly harassed by a mother moose and left with bruises and a torn shirt after the moose kicked her in the chest during one of its charges.
Donna Rodgers, 82, said her ordeal with a “huge angry mama moose” with two calves lasted about 30 minutes on a military base maintenance trail, The Anchorage Daily News reported Friday.
Rodgers, who has been walking Anchorage trails for more than 40 years, said she was talking with her son on the phone when the moose appeared on the trail at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.
“I hear the dogs barking and the next thing I know, here comes this huge, angry mama moose coming flying out of the side of the road,” she said.
The moose charged two of Rodgers’ three dogs, who ran in different directions.
“That gave me an opportunity,” Rodgers said. “At first I thought I could get back to the truck, which was in the parking lot, but I couldn’t.”
Rodgers bolted down the trail with her smallest dog and moved behind a wooden sign. She attempted to block the moose with her pet’s stroller and danced around the sign, evading the moose’s charges for the next 20 to 25 minutes.
Sometimes the animal would disappear into the woods, only to charge from a different direction, she said.
“She was pretty determined,” Rodgers said.
Eventually the moose kicked and hit Rodgers in the chest.
“I remember looking down at my shirt and saying, ‘She tore my shirt’ — that was the thought in my head,” she said. “’She tore my shirt and now she’s gonna come back and get the rest of me.’”
Base security officers alerted by Rodgers’ family arrived and got her into their truck. The moose charged the vehicle, she said.
Rodgers had X-rays but said she suffered only bruises to her chest and finger.
She plans to return to the trail and is not angry at the moose.
“You have to respect them because they’re mamas just like our mamas,” Rodgers said. “They’re just trying to protect their little ones.”