Perry County family has close encounter with black bear

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PERRY COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT/WKYT) - Some frightening moments for a family Friday morning when an unexpected visitor showed up at their Perry County home!

They say they heard their dog barking and looked outside only to see a bear in the driveway.

After living in a heavily wooded area of Perry County, the Harris family has become used to seeing their fair share of wildlife near their home but nothing prepared them for what they found roaming around their yard Friday morning.

“My heart was racing. I mean it was like my adrenaline was flowing it was like wow. That’s an actual bear. Oh my word,” said Joe Harris, who spotted the bear outside his home Friday.

While covering this story, WYMT’s Steve King had a close encounter with the 200-pound black bear. The bear actually walked up pretty close to where Steve was standing but seemed to keep its distance.

Fish and Wildlife officials say the bear was probably drawn to food left on the Harris' property.

“There is enough food here for them already but if they can take an easy meal by getting in the garbage or scraps or things like that then they'll take advantage,” said J.J. Baker with the Fish and Wildlife Department.

Wildlife officials say this frightening brush with nature could have been avoided and they encourage people to keep their food to themselves in order to avoid having any unwanted guests over for dinner.

Wildlife leaders say the best way to keep bears away is to follow some guidelines-- such as not leaving trash out and not leaving food scraps near your home.

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