Squirrels are the terrorists of the trees. Sure, they're small and cute, but that's how they lure you into a false sense of security—a single squirrel might be adorable and unassuming, but a swarm of them, crazed with rabies or rage, could tear someone to shreds with their sharp claws and acorn-shattering teeth.
Now, it looks like the squirrels have officially drawn first blood in Brooklyn's Prospect Park. According to the New York Times, an "unusually aggressive," potentially rabid squirrel has been attacking people there like the beginning of some squirrel uprising like a rodent War for the Planet of the Apes.
The New York Health Department has confirmed five separate attacks throughout July, including a jogger, a seven-year-old girl, and one guy who was definitely asking for it by carrying peanuts. The attacks have all taken place near the park's entrance at Parkside and Ocean Avenues, according to the Times.
The youngest victim, Maria Guerrero, told her harrowing tale to ABC 7, in which the demon squirrel leapt through the air and sank its fangs into the innocent child's flesh. "It kind of looked like a flying squirrel," she said. "He jumped on my arm and then he started to bite my arm, but I had no food! I had no food, I had nothing!"
According to Guerrero's father, he wrestled the squirrel off his daughter, but even then it kept coming back for more. It tried to pounce on her two more times before retreating to the solitude of a nearby tree.
"This animal has exhibited extremely unusual behavior and we are urging anyone who has been bitten by it, including any pets, to go and see your doctor or veterinarian," a Health Department spokesman said Friday. It's not clear if the animal is rabid, but the agency doesn't want anyone to take any chances.
"Most squirrel bites occur when someone attempts to feed the animal," it added. "Keep a safe distance from wildlife and never feed wild animals."
The squirrel is still at large, so maybe invest in a kevlar bite suit if you're a New Yorker longing for a stroll in the park this summer. Or just find a pool to cower in until the dreaded beast is found—that seemed to work before.