TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A 2-year-old German shepherd is being hailed a hero after apparently protecting a 7-year-old.
The dog is named Haus. His family is spending almost every waking hour at his side.
A rattlesnake, likely an eastern diamondback rattler, bit Haus three times Wednesday afternoon. His family believes he was protecting the 7-year-old, Molly DeLuca.
On Wednesday Donya DeLuca received a scary call. “I hear my daughter shrieking in the background and crying,” Donya DeLuca said about Molly.
It started when the family sent Haus behind the backyard pool to retrieve his toys. “He kept jumping back and then forward like he was kind of standing and back and forward. And he did it three times,” Donya said.
Donya said Haus’ loyalty is apparent. “He had every opportunity to run but he didn’t. He was protecting Molly, and my mother I think,” she said.
Donya’s mother rushed Haus to their family vet with blood on his leg. “I don’t even know how I knew it was a snake bite but I kind of like deduced there was not a real other possibility,” she said.
The pup is at BluePearl: Emergency Veterinary & Specialty Animal Hospital in Tampa where he’s in the intensive care unit.
A rattler bite is serious. “What it can do is a lot of bad things. So it can cause problems with clotting so they can bleed into the wound uncontrollably,” Veterinarian Danielle Pollio said.
Haus is getting anti-venom around the clock. “We love him and we cherish him, but I feel indebted that he saved our daughter,” Donya said.
Pictures from the DeLuca family Facebook page show a playful Haus. The rescue dog fits right in with his new parents and their two young children. The family is raising money to help pay for Haus’ care.