5 Brave Dogs Who Defended Their Owners and Homes in the Face of Terror

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Your sweet doggie may bring you endless comfort and enjoyment, along with lots of extra hair and the occasional drool. You might wonder, though, how ride or die your goofy fur baby truly is.

The U.S. Department of Justice’s Burglary of Single-Family Houses Report shows that a dog in the home will deter most burglars. Even small dogs will thwart many criminals because of the attention their shrill barking might draw, but it’s the physical presence of larger pups that poses a very real threat of injury to an intruder. Tales abound of man’s best friend putting themselves between their owners and danger. Here are a few stories that show dogs can be real heroes.

1. “If that’s not ‘Dog of the Year,’ I don’t know what is.”

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Blu is a 9-month-old pit bull that saved his owner’s life last spring when an intruder kicked open a bedroom door one morning and began shooting. Blu charged the suspect, or suspects, and took a bullet in the leg. Neighbors called the police, who arrived immediately with animal control. Fortunately, Blu recovered from his injury…but the bad guys got away. One of the men in the home called Blu ‘Dog of the Year’. “Pit bulls do get a bad rap, but they’re a nanny dog.”

2. “It was in a blink of an eye and I was really scared.”

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Fourth grader Shane was home alone when he heard a noise at the door. He thought he was hearing his mom returning home after a short trip to pick his siblings up from school. But it was a masked man breaking into the home. Shane ran up the stairs with the intruder close behind him. The family’s pit bull, named Baby Girl, leapt into action and lit into the man’s legs. The bad guy ran out of the home and, unfortunately, got away, and Shane rewarded Baby Girl with a lollipop treat. “Because, it was only me home and I didn’t know who it was and the only protection I had was my dogs.”

3. “We were able to at least survive.”

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Homeowner Kyle Brown says his pit bull wasn’t big – he was only 40 pounds. But the dog he called Petey knew danger when he saw it. When a gunman running from a botched car jacking leapt over the backyard fence, Petey attacked and was shot in the face. Mortally wounded, Petey chased the attacker back over the fence. Police were already in the area searching for the car-jacker. After a brief but fierce gun battle, they were able to apprehend the suspect.

Brown and his 10-year-old son, who was also at home, were both shaken but physically okay. They still grieve for Petey, who lost his life protecting his family.

4 “I heard a bunch of barking and struggling…”

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Earlier this year, 16-year-old Javier Mercado was home alone when he heard the sound of glass breaking. Armed burglars had broken into his Des Moines home. Mercado dialed 911, while his German Shepard Rex ran downstairs. From a closet, Mercado listened to the men scream as Rex attacked. Then he heard four shots…followed by quiet. Rex had chased the men away, although he was shot several times in the process.

Rex’s veterinarian completed a successful operation, saving the dog’s life, though he said the brave pup will likely develop arthritis and may need future physical therapy. According to Mercado, Rex saved his life that day – no question about it.

5. Trails of blood coming from upstairs.

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When the Murrin family arrived at their Richmond, VA, home they were greeted as usual by Ogden, the family’s German Shepard. But they also found something else – a scene straight out of a horror movie. Someone’s blood was splattered all over their door, walls and the staircase. “We looked upstairs and you could see trails of blood coming from upstairs, going all the way down,” said Tristan Murrin.

Murrin says his dog is friendly and loves playing with the neighborhood children – he just knows who belongs in the family home…and who doesn’t (clearly). The burglar, though he left wounded, escaped police capture and is still at large.