A group of mountain lions in Prescott has become aggressive and wildlife officials say it is a public safety threat.

Seeing the one mountain lion walk by and then three more, yea, just totally shocked, says Dennis Bennett, a Prescott resident.

The Bennetts saw four mountain lions in their front yard – a frightening image caught on surveillance video.

“This first video caught the cats. I think they were coming right along the creek here. Then they walked right along this grass area, then eventually up to the bridge, says Bennett.

Wildlife officers with the Arizona Game & Fish Department believe it is a mother mountain lion with her three offspring. The group has been spotted in Prescott over the past few weeks and are likely responsible for killing three dogs and injuring three others.

“Recently, the behavior reached a very concerning level something we would call an unacceptable behavior. The lions were attacking several pets and then showed aggressive action toward multiple people, says John Trierweiler, a spokesperson for the Arizona Game & Fish Department.

One pet owner tells us the attack happened within a minute while her dog was let out to use the bathroom. Arizona Game & Fish have put up signs warning hikers that Centennial Trail and the wilderness surrounding it are closed until they can find the fourth mountain lion. Were told this is the area where the other three lions were found and ultimately killed.

“Its a very hard choice. We have wildlife biologists that dedicate their entire career to monitoring the robust population of wildlife. The last thing we want to do is put an animal down, says Trierweiler.

Were told once mountain lions adopt unacceptable behavior toward humans, relocation would just move the problem to another area and in turn, pose threats to those communities.

“Mixed emotions because I know they are in and around this neighborhood not bothering anybody. Thats my assumption, but yeah, killing dogs and such is next level. So, it is understandable but such a bummer to put down such a wonderful animal, says Bennett.

Wildlife officials say if you do encounter a mountain lion you should make loud noises, maintain eye contact, and do not run.