Veterinary specialist Valerie Dramard believes the cats were protecting their territory from the poodle, and the woman simply got in the way.
"Cats are not new zombies of the apocalypse," Dramard said reassuringly. "They are just very territorial and unfriendly with unknown species."
But cats are known as aggressive hunters, too: Recent research has revealed that cats kill between 1.4 billion and 3.7 billion birds, and between 6.9 billion and 20.7 billion small mammals, each year in the United States.
Some wildlife conservationists have even proposed a ban on cats, or at least prohibitions against free-roaming cats. "We have long accepted the fact that you can't let your dog run free, and yet cat owners seem to take offense at the idea that they would be asked to keep their cats indoors," Stanley Temple, University of Wisconsin-Madison professor emeritus in conservation, told LiveScience.
About 8,000 feral cats are born every day in France, according to The Independent.
"We must get rid of this scourge," Galliot said. "There are too many cats in the neighborhood, many of which are strays. There are also lots of children here. We don't want it to happen again."