JASPER - Parks Canada confirmed a dog was killed by a bear in Jasper National Park on May 16 after it escaped from a car that had pulled over to look at it.
According to several sources, the car had pulled over around 9 p.m. near Kerkeslin campground, south of Athabasca Falls on Highway 93, when the dog leapt out of a car window to chase after the bear before it was killed.
Parks Canada human-wildlife conflict specialists responded to the incident and retrieved the dog.
In a statement on Facebook the agency said the dog was under control until it escaped from the car.
“This is a sad reminder that all pets should be kept under control and on-leash at all times while within a national park,” the statement read.
“Although this bear has not acted aggressively towards humans, our human-wildlife conflict specialists will continue to monitor it.”
News of the dog’s death comes less than two weeks after an off leash dog in Banff National Park ran into a black bear on the Stoney Squaw trail on May 5.
According to Bill Hunt, resource conservation manager for Banff National Park, the bear sat down and growled, but did not show any further aggression.
Those caught with dogs off leash in the mountain national parks can face a mandatory court appearance and fines of up to $25,000 under the National Parks Act.
Parks Canada said it shared the news of the dog’s death with “heavy hearts” and sent its condolences to the owner of the pet.