A North Carolina family is calling their dog a hero after he died warding off a bear that broke into their home Friday morning, WLOS reports.
Pickles, a 5-pound toy poodle with curly black fur, didn’t back down against the bear that came into his human family’s home in Black Mountain, a town outside Asheville in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Homeowner Tiffany Merrill said after she woke up, she walked over to her sliding glass door and opened it to let Pickles out. When she turned around to call for him, a bear walked into her house. “I would say he was about 150 to 200 pounds ― very aggressive [and] not scared at all,” Merrill told CBS 17.
Merrill said she thought she was going to die and she yelled to her children to shut their doors. “I started yelling for my kids. ‘Shut your doors! Shut your doors! There’s a bear in the house,’” she said.
That’s when the family dog ran in. “My dog came out, started barking and got the bear’s attention, and got the bear outside and he saved my life,” Merrill said.
Merrill said it was heartbreaking that she couldn’t help Pickles. “There was nothing I could do,” she said. “I wanted to go out there and jump on the back of the bear and save my dog.” Pickles was taken to the animal hospital and had surgery but later died from his injuries.