Video: 'Hungry' Lake Tahoe bear attacks inflatable Rudolph

A South Lake Tahoe area resident is mourning the loss of his young Rudolph yard decoration, after a violent mauling by a bear.

Dave Lester said the attack happened early Saturday morning around 5 a.m. in front of his home in the community of Zephyr Cove in Nevada. He shared video of the unprovoked attack and said that by the time he found the deflated victim, there was nothing he could do to save it.

"Sad news," Lester announced on Facebook, adding, "Woke up this morning to Rudolph laying on the ground unresponsive. No amount of CPR or duct tape could revive him."

Lester also shared photos of the aftermath with daylight offering a clear picture of the crime scene. From the images, it appeared it could have been worse. 

Dave Lester shared video of a bear taking down his inflatable Rudolph Christmas decoration on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2022 in front of his home in the community of Zephyr Cove in Nevada. 

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The remaining cast of inflatable Christmas decorations on the yard were untouched by the attacker.

Lester told KTVU this wasn't the first time the suspect and his friends visited his property, noting that they tend to come by once a week, usually Tuesdays, when the garbage was left out for pick-up the following morning. 

"They have a little route they use where they walk right in front of the houses," Lester said, adding the animals were known to case the area looking for their next meal. 

Rudolph has had previous run-ins with the bears, Lester noted, but until now, it never got physical. 

"There were a couple stare downs last year but for some reason he just figured he was going to make a meal out of Rudolph," the victim's owner said.  

He speculated that the perpetrator, whom he described as a "hungry Tahoe Bear," was not feeling the Christmas spirit.

"RIP Rudolph," Lester said, adding that the victim was only 2 years old.

This story was reported from Oakland, Calif.