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Woman Punches "Aggressive" Otter as it Attacks Dog

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BOCA RATON, Florida -- A woman said she was walking her two dogs near the water when an aggressive otter attacked one of her dogs, yanking it into the water.

Leah Vanon of west Boca Raton, said she was walking her Labrador retriever and her fox terrier, when she saw four otters in the water. She and the dogs kept going, but one of the otters climbed out of the water and grabbed the lab. When the otter pulled the dog into the water, Vanon jumped in after it.

Vanon said the terrier then jumped into the water and the otter went after the small dog. Vanon said she started punching the otter and didn't stop until it let go of the dog.

The dogs were not seriously injured. There was no immediate explanation for why the otter was behaving so aggressively.

Florida otters are typically 3 to 4 feet long and can weigh up to 25 pounds.

In 2001, an otter in New Port Richey, Fla., dragged a 5-year-old dog into a lake and killed it. There was also no explanation for that attack.

Otters normally live on a diet of shellfish and fish and are nonagressive.

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