You may want to hold onto your pets a little tighter after you read this. According to reports, a Missouri family nearly lost their little fur baby after a red-tailed hawk tried to grab their Chihuahua.
Their pup, twelve-week-old Lola, was outside in their front yard when a red-tailed hawk suddenly swooped down and attempted to snatch the dog with its giant talons.
“I didn’t even see it until it was right on top of her. That’s how fast it happened,” Kathryn Garver, Lola’s mom, said following the terrifying incident. “There was nothing I could’ve done to have stopped it. Because I didn’t see it until it was already, she would’ve already been gone.”
Dog owner rushes to save four-pound chihuahua
Luckily, Garver was just a few steps away from Lola at the time. She saw the bird of prey try to grab her four-pound puppy, and she rushed in to rescue her pet.
“It felt like he was right there and just, it was so fast,” she admitted. “It just happened so fast, and I honestly thought he had gotten her.”
Thankfully, the hawk missed out on its chance on its first attempt but might not have been ready to give up so quickly. “I’m chasing her because she’s freaking out and so I grab her, and that’s whenever I see that he’s still in the tree,” Garver said.
According to the Wildlife Center of Texas, hawk attacks are relatively rare. However, they advise owners not to leave their pets outside alone, especially if they’re small.
“It’s a possibility that the hawk could’ve grabbed the dog and could’ve done some damage, possibly even killed the dog, but this is a very rare occurrence for hawks,” said Brooke Yahney with the Wildlife Center of Texas.
Authorities advise pet owners to never leave pets alone outside
She also says that predators come in many forms. “All kinds of wildlife and also domestic pets, like if a large dog was off leash in the neighborhood, that’s obviously a threat for that small dog and that’s obviously more likely also,” Yahney said.
It’s a threat that Garver now knows all too well. Last year, a neighbor’s dog killed her 14-year-old Chihuahua, Cassie.
“She was at their fence barking and the other dog, from the hole that they had dug, reached in, grabbed her and took her, and mauled her to death,” Garver said.
Before the incident with the red-tailed hawk, she was already protective of Lola. Now, we have a feeling she’s never leaving her sight.
Hawks will only attack prey they deem small enough to pick up and fly off with— so large and medium-sized dog breeds won’t need to worry as much about being attacked by a hawk.