From Harper’s Young People (1880):
The large and powerful dogs which are found in Canada and the northern portions of Michigan, Minnesota, and other border States, where they are used as train dogs to drag the mail sledges over vast wastes of snow during the winter, are natural enemies of the lynx, and pursue it furiously through the snow-bound forests. Their loud barking often warns the hunter before he himself catches sight of the game that the desired prize is treed, and awaits its fate, with arched back and fur bristling, after the manner of an enraged cat.
The dogs depicted treeing this lynx are most likely of the farm shepherd- or farm collie-type.
These were dogs that were used for many different purposes– driving sheep and cattle, guarding the farms and homesteads, and hunting various game species.
It would make sense that someone with sheep would use dogs of this type to hunt a supposed predator of the stock.
I don’t know how often they would have attacked sheep.
My guess is not much. This animal prefers to live on snowshoe hares, and although it will hunt other things, if it has ample snowshoe hare populations, it won’t try to hunt much else.
These animals most likely became rare in the Lower 48 because of unregulated trapping for their fur. Note that I said unregulated trapping, for the Canadians and Alaskans have not made the lynx rare through their regulated trapping regimes.
In some parts of Canada, these animals aren’t just trapped and hunted for their fur. They are also taken for their meat, which is said to be quite good.
I’d like to try it.
It’s basically eating a big gray pussy cat, but it’s said to be a quite nice, lean meat.
But then you’re eating a cat, which some people erroneously think is going extinct. It’s endangered only in the Lower 48, not Alaska or Canada.
But because people just don’t know, you’re evil if you even suggest it.
But many a North Woods trapper or hunter has relied upon lynx meat to sustain him and his family through the long winter.