The term “a dog is a man’s best friend” is thrown around a lot these days.
In fairness, it’s difficult not to continuously say it when we see so much of their purity and innocence plastered across social media.
But what isn’t focussed on so much is the fact that things can often go wrong with pooches too. After all, long before the majority of the hundreds of various breeds were domesticated, dogs were wild animals with normal natural instincts just like the rest of the animal kingdom.
Recently, in the Serbian town of Pancevo an incident occurred that nearly ended the life of an innocent little girl.
A bullmastiff, known for being an incredibly strong an often extremely large breed, managed to escape it’s cage when it’s owner was out and found itself in the complete freedom of the outdoors. Where, it quickly pursued an absolutely terrified 11-year-old girl down the street before biting her legs and arms while attempting to drag her back to his cage.
The little girl screamed in terror as she feared for her life while the powerful mastiff showed no signs of letting up, dragging her from side to side like a rag doll.
Luckily, her screams didn’t go unnoticed. A man walking his dachshund nearby heard the calls for help and before he could react, the pooch named Leo sprinted across and attacked the mastiff in an attempt to free the child from it’s grip.
(Image Credit: EuroPics (CEN))
A fight quickly broke out between the two dogs and sadly, due to his inferior size and ferocity, Leo was fatally injured.
But, in bravely diving in to help, the mighty little dachshund allowed the girl enough time to escape virtually unharmed.
An eyewitness called Milica Panajotovic, 35, told The Daily Mail:
“The girl spotted the dog running towards her because it was barking, but she had no chance to get away, and it knocked her flying”
“It then grabbed her arms and legs and was biting her and then started to drag her by the arm back to its cage”
“I was just struck dumb and unable to move, and there was a man walking his Dachshund as well who seemed frozen to the spot”
“But his dog which was off the lead when it saw what was happening ran over and started barking at the bigger dog, and then tried to bite it on the leg.”
Talk about courage from the little Dachshund! It’d be like you or I going up to a complete stranger ten times our size and picking a fight for the good of someone else’s safety. How many people can really say they’d react that way in a situation similar to this one? Very few I suspect.
But, as is the way with so many dogs, the instinct to protect often overrides all logistical common sense.
Once the little girl had freed herself from the mastiff’s grip, a couple close by took her to safety while a group of male onlookers picked up sticks and used them to ward off the angry dog.
Leo, who was still alive at this point, was badly injured. He made it to the vets where he was immediately operated on but to no avail. His battle wounds were too great and the vet was unable to save him.
(Image Credit: EuroPics (CEN))
The little girl, who was taken to hospital shortly after the incident, is said to have been released and is healthy and happy again.
Police have confirmed that they are investigating the incident.
Leo’s owner mentioned that he had named him so due to the fact that despite his miniature stature, he had a heart as big as a lion and wasn’t scared of anything or anyone. Which, I think it’s safe to say has proved to be true.
Since the attack took place, neighbours have rallied together to organise a memorial statue being put up in Leo’s honour to commemorate his bravery in affectively sacrificing his own life to save that of someone else’s.
The statue has been placed in a local park where he can watch over the children playing like a silent guardian protecting all that he sees.
A quote written on the side reads:
“To all small heroes with big hearts”
(Image Credit: Marko Drobnjakovic/AP)
And with that, i’m getting all teary eyed! Leo, you’ve done us all proud. Rest in peace little man.