A woman was attacked Monday morning by a pack of dingoes while on a run on the Australian island of K’gari, which is in the Queensland region, according to authorities.
The 24-year-old woman, whose name was not released, was jogging in the Orchid Beach area when four dingoes began to pursue her, according to News.com.au. She attempted to escape the animals by running into the ocean, but three of them followed her into the water and attacked her.
Rangers said the dingoes on K’gari force their prey into the ocean to tire them out before a kill, a common tactic for predators.
Two men driving a four-wheel-drive ute on the beach saw the woman being attacked and drove toward the dingoes to scare them away.
The men ran into the ocean to save her before placing her in the ute tray and transporting her to the Orchid Beach fenced area. The driver notified emergency services of the attack at about 9:15 am local time.
The woman received first aid for injuries on her arms before she was flown to Hervey Bay Hospital for further treatment. One of the men suffered an injury to his hand while helping the woman.
The Australian outlet said the area where the woman was jogging is typically full of other people, but on Monday, it wasn’t, which caught the attention of the pack.
“Unfortunately for this woman this morning, she was alone and ended up in a situation that was quite compromising to her because of that,” head ranger Linda Behrendorff spokesperson said, according to News.com.au.
The dingoes involved in the attack are from a pack known to be “comfortable” around the Orchid Beach area, according to the outlet. One of the animals in the pack has previously been observed lunging at people.
Authorities said the woman is “lucky to be alive.”
Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service is investigating the attack and said that euthanization remains a possibility. A dingo was euthanized earlier this year after it was filmed biting a tourist sunbathing on the beach, making it the first to be put down in four years. A 10-year-old boy was also dragged underwater by a dingo on K’gari last month.
“It’s definitely a last resort and it’s a decision that’s not made lightly, there’s a lot of things that get taken into account and it’s a decision that’s made at a lot higher level than the rangers on the ground,” Behrendorff said.
Monday’s attack prompted warnings to K’gari visitors from the Queensland government to follow dingo safety protocol, which includes staying in groups, not running or jogging and keeping food away from the animals.
Queensland Environment wrote on Facebook that people who feel threatened by dingoes should stay calm, stand tall, face the animals and calmly back away to a safe area. The agency said to wait until the animals have left before moving on and to never run from the animals because they will chase you.
A spokesperson for the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service said it extends its sympathies to the woman, her family and friends, and wishes her a speedy recovery, according to News.com.au.
“QPWS rangers will conduct further investigations to identify the Wongari (dingo) responsible for the incident. It is understood that one of the animals involved was a collared wongari,” the spokesperson said. “Future management decisions will be made once the information has been reviewed and the investigation is complete.”