Brave Dog Sacrifices Himself To Protect Family From Bear

June 13th, 2018

Other than being the best pets in the animal kingdom, dogs play a variety of important roles for us — best friend, running buddy, therapist, snuggle companion, nap partner and the list goes on and on.

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For a 14-year-old English Settler named Pete, he played all those roles for his humans—Stephen Parisi and Cathi Henn, a married couple in New York—as well as their Guardian Angel and hero when they needed him most. According to The Little Things, the couple fostered (and then adopted) Pete, an Ohio native, after he became too old to be a hunting dog.

On February 11, 2018, Stephen took Pete and his two other dogs on a hike at Monksville Reservoir in New Jersey, reported by BBC. The dogs explored a little off the hiking trail and ran into a black bear in the woods.

“The bear’s only exit was a 180-degree turn and the bear was never going to turn its back on something that it was scared of, so it came for Stephan and the dogs,” Cathi shared with BBC.

14-year-old Pete stepped up and bravely fended off the bear while the others escaped to safety.

After Stephen was able to safely secure the other dogs, he went back to scare off the bear and tend to Pete who was severely injured. Once Stephen transported Pete down to the main trail, Cathi and him quickly drove Pete to the hospital.

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At the vet, the x-rays revealed that Pete had extensive trauma to his spinal cord which meant that he could never walk again. He required extensive surgeries. Due to Pete’s old age, he most likely would not have made it through the surgical procedures, reported by The Little Things. With a heavy heart, Stephen and Cathi decided it was best to relieve Pete’s pain and let him go that afternoon.

Pete’s owners wrote him a heartbreaking tribute on Instagram, “Run free Pete, you no longer have all those aches and pains of old age. You had a great 18 months with us running the days away like you loved.. Love you Petey. Save me some cheese for when we see each other again.”

During his final moment, Pete was surrounded by those he loved most. He left the world as a man’s best friend and hero.

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“I want to remember Pete as the happy-go-lucky dog he was. I want to remember him running through the woods, always with his tail wagging,” Cathi told BBC.

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Source: Little Things