A 47-year-old man has died and his wife is fighting for life after they were attacked by their pet deer in north-east Victoria.
Paul McDonald was feeding the deer at his property in Moyhu, near Wangaratta, about 8.20am today when the animal attacked.
“At some point while he was in the enclosure he was attacked by the deer,” Acting Senior Sargent Paul Purcell said.
Mr McDonald’s wife, Mandi, 45, and their son rushed to provide assistance when they heard a noises.
Mandi entered the enclosure and was also attacked before the couple’s son dragged her away from the family pet.
Police confirmed officers shot the deer a number of times for the safety of the family and the attending paramedic.
Mr McDonald died from his injuries at the scene while his wife was flown to the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne with life-threatening injuries to her upper body and leg.
According to police the Waipiti deer – a cross between a red deer and an elk – had been a pet of the family for about 2 years.
“I know the family are very traumatised about what has happened,” Purcell said.
“These are wild animals, whether they are out in the wild or kept as pets and their behaviour can be unpredictable”
The family has lived at the property for between 10 to 12 years.
© Nine Digital Pty Ltd 2019