Courtesy Janis Stephenson
08/03/2010 at 05:00 PM EDT
A regular morning romp through the yard turned into a nightmare for a young Chihuahua named Buster when he was suddenly attacked and taken by a wild coyote in the suburban town of Littleton, Colo. But thanks to two brave pit bull neighbors, the dog survived the frightening encounter and is on the road to a recovery.
Four-year-old Buster had just returned from his morning walk with mom Jodi Robinette on July 31, but wanted a little more play time outside. Having already checked the surroundings of her back yard, Robinette felt it safe to let Buster burn off some active energy while she kept an eye out from her living room couch. But not even 30 seconds later, Robinette was back on her feet.
"I heard him scream like I've never heard an animal scream before," Robinette tells PEOPLEPets.com. "I instantly knew that an animal got him."
After spotting a tail turn the corner of her house, Robinette sprinted to the front of the yard and saw the coyote running off with Buster in his mouth. While Robinette was in pursuit, a pair of pit bulls were on neighborhood watch and ran toward the coyote, on a mission to rescue the poor dog from the vicious abductor. Realizing he was outnumbered, the coyote released Buster and ran off.
"The pits followed my dog underneath a bush, guarding him," Robinette recalls. "[They] lay next to him, licked him and protected him."
Robinette, a neurosurgery coordinator, wrapped the gravely injured canine in a towel and rushed him to Columbine Animal Hospital
. Immediately treated for pain and shock, Buster was scheduled for surgery on Aug. 2 to repair damage to his chest wall on both sides. Dr. Lee Bregitzer performed the operation, and is happy to report that Buster is well on the road to recovery – thanks to the quick thinking of the neighboring dogs.
They were "guardian angels for her dog," Dr. Bregitzer says, "disguised as pit bulls."
Robinette has nothing but praise and gratitude for the heroic canines, who stepped in quicker than she ever could have.
"[They] were looking out for Buster's best interest against the coyote," Robinette says. "They were looking out for my dog." See more animal heroes on PEOPLEPets.com: Dog Saves Canine Pal from Busy IntersectionFearless Cat Saves Owner from Dog Attack