Gift Moyo, 24, was trying to find his donkeys early Wednesday morning in Bulilima, southern Zimbabwe, when a leopard dropped down on him from a tree, the Bulawayo daily newspaper The Chronicle reported.
Moyo told the paper that his dogs started growling before he was attacked by the leopard.
“I was startled. Before I could recover, the leopard jumped onto my head and scratched me. It then grabbed me by the left arm and I fell onto the ground. The animal maintained its grip,” he said.
Moyo had to hold onto the leopard’s ear and paw as it struggled to reach his neck. After his dogs fought off the animal, Moyo fought the temptation to stay where he was.
“I staggered towards a nearby stream and washed some of the blood off my body so that I would not attract other wild animals.”
Bleeding and in pain, Moyo managed to walk the 10 kilometres back to his home in Male Village. Villagers rushed him to hospital, where he is recovering.
The newspaper published a picture of Moyo in his hospital bed, bandaged heavily around the head and arm. It was unknown whether any of his dogs were injured by the leopard.