This story originally appeared at InspireMore.
Dogs have proven time and time again that they’d do anything to keep their human companions safe — even if it means sacrificing their own lives.
One incredibly brave canine from South Africa nearly did just that when he saw his owner was in danger. Gino Wensel was taking his German shepherd, Duke, for a walk in early February when a stranger approached the two, knife in hand.
Gino says he wasn’t sure whether the man meant to rob or attack him, but adds he does know that “Duke was never going to allow anyone to cause me any harm.”
Duke immediately began growling and baring his teeth to scare the man away. The attacker responded by brutally plunging the knife into the dog’s head before running away. The German shepherd collapsed, and Gino feared the worst. “I thought he was dead. It was only the knife moving in his head that showed me he was just alive,” Gino said.
Desperate to save his friend, Gino rushed Duke to the Animal Welfare Society of South Africa, an organization that offers veterinary services to underprivileged communities in Cape Town. AWSSA spokesman Allan Perrins says Duke was near death when Gino brought him in.
“He was slipping in and out of consciousness and he was immediately sedated and given pain relief while we carried out an X-ray as we feared the blade was in Duke’s brain.” The blade had gone in three inches, but by some miracle, it had bent, missing his brain by millimeters!
Fortunately, the veterinarian treating Duke safely removed the blade and stitched up the wound at no cost to Gino. Duke went on to make an incredible recovery, to the relief of his worried dad. The organization later shared a video of their heartwarming reunion on Facebook, during which Duke could not stop squealing at the sight of Gino.
“Gino has owned Duke since he was a tiny puppy and it was patently obvious to everyone that the special bond that this pair shared was something worth making every effort for,” the organization wrote.
We’ll never understand how someone could be capable of such cruelty. That said, it’s comforting to know there are plenty of good people out there to outnumber the bad — namely, everyone who worked to save Duke’s life.
Watch as Gino is reunited with his furry savior below and share to spread thanks for the dog’s heroic actions.
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