WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
The mysterious and highly aggressive amber-eyed beast that mauled a man’s face after biting its way into his tent as he slept has been identified as a fox.
Marco L., 21, was left with cuts all over his face and his arm in a cast after the incident which happened as he was camping with his friends in tents at a garden patch owned by his family in Waiblingen, a city located in the south-western German state of Baden-Wuerttemberg,
During the night, his tent was suddenly ripped open by an unknown animal, which immediately started to attack him.
Pictures Credit: CEN
Marco said: “I woke up and felt a sharp burning sensation on my neck. Suddenly, something grabbed my right hand and bit me. Sharp teeth pinched into my arm. The animal bit me, flinging my arm back and forth.
“This must be a nightmare I thought.”
When the creature attacked a second time, Marco took a pillow to fend off the second attack.
Marco said: “The animal bit into the pillow. I saw two amber-coloured eyes right in front of me.”
Only when he switched on his mobile phone light and his friends also put on their lights did the animal disappear completely.
Marco was brought to the hospital where he underwent surgery on his hand and received post-trauma rabies treatment, which normally involves several booster vaccines as well as special antidotes.
In the images, Marco can be seen with bleeding cuts all over his cheek and bite wounds in his neck.
Investigators have now identified the animal as a fox after they managed to secure saliva from Marco’s tent, jacket and pillow.
A spokesman from the Baden-Wuerttemberg Interior Ministry said: “We believe it is proven by this evidence that a fox has caused the man’s bite injuries.”
Forestry professor Dr Sven Herzog of the University of Dresden said that while foxes usually avoid human contact they can be dangerous.
Dr Herzog said: “A fox is about as dangerous as a small dog. A bite is also much more comparable to one from a small dog. It does not really want to hurt. It wants to defend itself.”
The German professor said that the prolonged attack and mauling of Marco’s face might have been caused because the fox was panicking.
He said: “Presumably, the fox found some rubbish in the area and then went into the tent out of curiosity. There he met the people and was terrified. But he could not get out of the tent again and probably panicked.”
That said, Dr Herzog warns that fox attacks are more common than many think, although he partially blames humans themselves for it.
He said: “But I hear of such alleged fox attacks frequently each year. Especially on campsites. But that’s curiosity plus rubbish rather than an animal attack.”
Dr Herzog said that “a kick should be sufficient” to chase a fox away.