Tracy Bloom reports for KTLA5 that a German shepherd was brutally beaten and shot multiple times while trying to protect his teenage owner, who was home alone when two thieves broke into the family’s residence in Des Moines, Washington.
The home-invasion occurred in broad daylight about 12:20 p.m. on a weekday, February 21, 2018, in the 1400 block of South 234th Street.
The heroic German Shepherd is appropriately named Rex, which means king.
Des Moines Police Department Cmdr. Doug Jenkins said, “A 16-year-old boy who was home alone said he believed someone was breaking in. He heard noises and voices, ran upstairs and hid in closet. He continued relaying everything he heard on the phone with dispatch.”
The teen was hiding in a closet with his dog, Rex, when the 2-year-old German shepherd ran downstairs to confront the intruders. The thieves beat the dog, leaving him badly injured.
Even after being bloodied and hurt, Rex still had enough strength left to get back to the boy — his best friend — and protect him as the thieves proceeded into the bedrooms, including the one where the boy was hiding. The thieves opened fire, shooting Rex multiple times. He was struck in the neck, leg and knee, yet managed to survive.
The boy’s aunt, Susy Cadena, calls Rex a “hero dog” in a GoFundMe page:
“As they entered the room where my nephew was hiding in the closet, Rex came out with the little strength he had left in him and threw himself at them as he knew my nephew was in danger. My nephew was protected by his eternal friend until the last bit of strength he had in him to do what his unconditional, loving instinct told him to.”
The intruders fled the home as they heard the sound of approaching police sirens. They were gone by the time responding officers arrived at the scene.
Rex was taken to an animal hospital in critical condition and was later transported to BluePearl Veterinary Partners. Rex remains in the veterinary intensive care unit, but his condition has since been upgraded to stable.
His owners, who have already spent $2,000 on Rex’s medical expenses, are trying to raise funds to pay for the surgery Rex needs to save his life.
After just one day, Rex’s GoFundMe had surpassed its goal of $10,000.
H/t The Goldwater