9-year-old girl attacked by cougar back in the woods for therapy

Lily Kryzhanivskyy, who was attacked by a cougar at the campsite near Fruitland, has returned to the forest for rehabilitation treatment.

SPOKANE, Wash – Lily Kryzhanivskyy, a nine-year-old girl who was attacked by a cougar at a campsite near Fruitland on May 28, has returned to the woods for rehabilitation in the form of therapy and education.

Since the attack, Lily has been steadily recovering at the hospital and a GoFundMe set up for her has raised more than $100,000. Her family continues to update GoFundMe showing Lily’s progress.

This week, Lily was invited to participate in the Kalispel Indian Tribe wildlife show. The research aims to keep cougars out of habitats with humans and livestock.

In the study, cougars were slitted, released and then further monitored with hunting dogs. Cougars were not killed in the study. The goal of the study was to test methods of paradoxical conditioning that would ultimately lead to less conflict between humans and livestock and lead to fewer cougars being removed from the landscape.

Bart George, wildlife program manager for the Kalispel Indians, led the study with wildlife expert Jeff Flood and caretaker Bruce Duncan. George, Flood and Duncan contacted Lily’s family and invited her to come with them to remove a collar from a cougar they were studying.

“As you can see from the photo, Lily has faced any fear she may have faced and has had a great experience doing so,” Stevens County Sheriff Brad A. Manke said in a statement. “The cougar has been safely released back into the forest.”

Lily was attacked around 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 28 at a children’s home near Fruitland, Washington. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) said before the attack, Lily was playing hide and seek in the woods with two other children. When Lily jumped out to surprise her friends, the cougar suddenly attacked.

On June 13, Lily went to Seattle for facial nerve surgery on her left eye, which is still not fully open. However, her family says this will not cause concern for her recovery.

Many, including Washington Fish and Wildlife Sgt. Tyler Bahrenburg, praises Lily for her toughness and spirit thanks to her recovery.

“She was a very tough girl,” Bahrenburg said. “She’s tougher than most adult men I know.”

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https://www.king5.com/article/life/people/9-year-old-girl-attacked-cougar-continue-recovery-woods/293-8eb00f49-1f73-4009-9559-0912576be88b 9-year-old girl attacked by cougar back in the woods for therapy

Russell Falcon

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