Gregory Grant, of Sherman, CT, shared astonishing footage of the rescue last weekend. His son, Gavin, can be seen in the far right corner of the screen, playing with what appears to be a baseball bat. He swings at something before disappearing off-camera. Moments later, a black bear shoots into the frame.
Enter the family’s golden retriever, Jake. Intervening, Jake chases the predator away from Gavin—and then around the yard—before the black bear hightails it back into the woods.
According to Gregory, his son was taking a walk through the yard when he spotted the bear, just moments before Jake did. Though Gregory admits he’s not sure if the bear intended to harm his son, he credits Jake with not giving the predator any opportunity. Both the boy and his dog were unharmed.
For his heroic actions, the 8-year-old pup was rewarded with a bath and extra treats that evening. “He got ice cream. He got the whole nine yards,” Gregory told WTNH. “He helped us out that day for sure.”
When contacted by WTNH, Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) reported that they were investigating the encounter. If it’s found the bear behaved aggressively, they may take action.
Those concerned about keeping bears at bay can take a few simple precautions. Experts advise that most bears will be scared away from residential areas by flashing lights, noise makers, alarms, and sprinkler systems. In more serious cases, electric fences can be installed.