What to do if a bear wanders into your yard

There’s a surge in black bear sightings in King County.


Yes, it looks cuddly, but please do not try to cuddle it. Cuddle your dog instead.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Experienced hikers may know what to do for bear encounters in the wild — but what happens when one lumbers into your front yard?

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) said that King County has seen an uptick in incidents involving bears in residential areas.

Here are some general tips for what to do if one of these living boulders wanders onto your lawn.

  • If the bear just passes through, there’s no need to report it. Just let the bear do it’s thing and don’t try to interact with it.
  • If the bear attacks your pet or livestock, it will need to be reported as it could become dangerous to the public. Email WILDCOMM@dfw.wa.gov, submit an online report, or call 911.
  • If it attacks you, call 911 immediately.

Otherwise, take steps to help keep bears wild and avoid attracting them to your area.

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