A stray dog which had apparently killed a young leopard in a fight later succumbed to his injuries in Karnataka's Mandya district, forest officials said on Friday.
"Prima facie it appears that both the animals fought hard before their deaths but the exact cause of the leopard's death is yet to be ascertained," Deputy Conservator of Forests (Mandya) Ravishankar told IANS.
He added that both the animal carcasses have been sent for autopsy.
"Though the leopard appeared to be only 6 months old and the dog was robustly built, still I would bet on the former's victory, but never know that in a jungle circumstances and luck completely dominate laws," Ravishankar said.
According to another forest official, with the livestock being closely guarded by men, the leopards are going after dogs.
"They also relish canines and it's easy for the leopards to hunt down dogs. Generally, villages with a good population of dogs attract leopards. They attack and catch dogs by the throat leaving no chance for them to bark and raise an alarm. But in this case it is clear that both the prey and the predator have fought hard. At least such signs are visible," an official said.
While a local resident, Thimme Gowda told IANS that a local stray dog, regularly fed by the villagers had grown into a strong adult dog, which villagers used to fondly call 'kariya' (blackie).
"It was a well built dog, whereas the leopard that died was small but still a strong one. This confrontation may have taken place in the wee hours of the morning as that is the time when animals like leopards come out to hunt their prey," he added.
He added that due to the prevailing cold weather, the villagers shut their doors while sleeping though some of them may have heard but ignored the sound of the barking dog.
"We only came to know about the incident in the morning when some villagers on their way to the fields noticed both the carcasses," he added.
A few days ago, a stray dog in Karnataka got trapped inside a toilet with a leopard for nearly seven hours on Wednesday, without attacking each other.
The incident took place in Bilinele village, in Kadaba, Dakshina Kannada district, following which, it has gone viral on social media.
According to reports, the dog was being chased by the leopard and it found a hiding spot in a residential toilet. However, the leopard still managed to follow it inside it. When the lady of the house opened the bathroom in the morning, she immediately boltd it from outside and aletred the police.
Taking to a Twitter thread, Prajwal explained the entire episode from the scratch. A picture shared by him shows the dog sitting near the bathroom door, while the leopard is sitting at a distance beside the Indian toilet commode. The picture has been reportedly from above after removing the asbestos of the bathroom.
(With inputs from IANS)