Hero Jack Russell terrier saves 61-year-old owner from bear attack

Dogs are such loyal and protective animals. They will always step up to protect their owners from danger, even if it means putting themselves in harm’s way — like taking on a much bigger animal.

That was the case recently, after one brave Jack Russell terrier acted fast to protect his owner from a bear attack.

According to a news release from Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department, Susan Lee, a 61-year-old woman from Strafford, Vermont, was walking her two dogs, a Jack Russell terrier and a labradoodle, when disaster struck.


The woman reportedly “heard a loud noise” and saw a large bear charging at her. She tripped while trying to get away, and soon the wild animal was on top of her and biting her upper leg.

With his owner in danger, the Jack Russell terrier jumped into action, taking on the wild bear to divert it away from Susan.

Game Warden Sgt. Jeffrey Whipple told USA Today that the dog did “some ninja moves,” distracting the bear long enough to allow Susan to escape.

The “ninja moves” were apparently pretty swift, as the little dog was also able to escape unharmed.


The woman and her dog made it home, and the bear was not seen again. Susan was treated at Gifford Medical Center for “non-life-threatening injuries.”

It is believed that the bear had cubs with her, and felt provoked after being surprised by Susan and her dogs. Whipple told USA Today that the bear gave Susan a “warning bite,” and that the bear might’ve retreated after.

But he also said it was possible that “if the dog wasn’t there, the bear may have caused more damage to her.”

The department said that black bear attacks were very rare, with only three prior attacks in Vermont, and that this was considered an isolated incident. There are about 6,000 bears in the state, but they are usually shy around people. However, encounters are a possibility.


“Bear attacks are extremely rare in Vermont,” Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department Bear Biologist Jaclyn Comeau said in the release. “However, at this time of year black bears are moving in family units and mothers will be protective of their cubs. If confronted by a bear it is essential to remain calm and back away slowly, and to fight back immediately if attacked.”

What a brave little dog. Thank you to this Jack Russell terrier for facing down this bear to defend his owner.

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