Pet deer kills owner, injures his wife

  • 18/04/2019
Paul and Mandi McDonald.
Paul and Mandi McDonald. Photo credit: Mandi McDonald/Facebook

An Australian man has died and his wife is seriously injured after they were attacked by their pet deer in rural Victoria.

Paul McDonald had gone out to feed the animal on their property at Moyhu, south of Wangaratta, when the deer attacked him, the ABC reported.

His wife, Mandi McDonald, was then attacked and badly hurt when she tried to help her husband.

The couple's teenage son hit the deer with a lump of wood to save his mother, the ABC said.

The couple suffered critical injuries and Mr McDonald died a short time later. He was 47.

Police officers shot and killed the stag at the scene due to safety concerns for the paramedic attending the incident.

The attack is very unusual for a deer - let alone a lethal attack, an expert told the ABC.

"Deer are much less likely to attack anyone than they are to run away from them," the Australian Deer Association's Steve Garlick said.

Police said the family had kept the stag for six years and it was the only deer living on the property, along with a small number of sheep.

The deer was a cross between a red deer and an elk, known as a wapiti.