Big Dog Saves Her Little Pal from Clutches of Hungry Owl

When a 70-pound boxer named Sadie saw a great horned owl drop out of the sky and sink its talons into her 7-pound Shih-Tzu/miniature poodle...

 |  Jan 17th 2012  |   13 Contributions


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Sadie (left) ran to the aid of her 7-pound friend when the little dog was attacked by an owl. Shown here with the family's rottie, Eli. (Photo: Michael Smart, Sun-Times Media)

When a 70-pound boxer named Sadie saw a great horned owl drop out of the sky and sink its talons into her 7-pound Shih-Tzu/miniature poodle mix friend, Ramadi, she leapt into action to try to save the tiny pooch from the owl's clutches.

The dogs' owners heard barking in the backyard and went to see what was going on. It was dark, but they could see that Sadie was on top of something. Then Ramadi came running inside, dragging that something, with Sadie chasing after it. When they got near enough, their owners could see the odd parade up close:

There was little Ramadi, and attached to her was an owl. And attached to the owl was Sadie, who was trying to help get the owl off her friend. They pried Sadie off the owl, and someone pinned the owl to the floor with a foot while someone else ran to get some thick gloves.

It took some work to detach the owl from the dog, but miraculously the dog was not injured. Her owners think her thick coat kept her safe. That and Sadie, who probably prevented the owl from really digging in. Then they shut the owl outside.

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Amy Evans, who had just gotten back from an Army tour in Iraq, holds her dog, Ramadi. (Photo courtesy Patrick Evans, via the Chicago Sun-Times)

But it was not the last they would see of the raptor.

The owl stood outside the sliding-glass door looking at the smaller dog as if he wasnt leaving without it, said Pingree Grove (Ill.)Police Sgt. Rich Blair. That could be pretty creepy for the little dog.

The officers were able to capture the bird in a fishing net and turn it over to a rehab center. Sadly, it turned out that the bird had significant injuries consistent with trauma from a car accident. Rehab veterinarians said the bird was extremely thin and its eye was terribly infected. It was euthanized the owl because vets said there was no hope for rehabilitation.

The owl's injuries could have explained why it went after a dog.

Most of the time they want nothing to do with humans or dogs, said Sandy Fejt, education site manager at Willowbrook Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center. With its sight impaired, it was probably very hungry and looking for easy prey. Poor owl.

Ramadi was not the only canine victim of owl attacks in the town recently. It was the third time in three days that an owl had gone after a dog; one dog died. It was likely the same bird.

The dogs of Pingree Grove can probably breathe a little easier now. But it would have been a happier ending if the owl had lived and would be back to its normal, canine-free cuisine after healing.

Source: Chicago Sun-Times

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