Lifestyle & Human Interest

Heroic Pit Bull Throws Itself Between Deadly Copperhead Snake and Owner


One woman’s loyal dog stepped between her and danger when an unwelcome predator threatened to attack his owner.

Haley McCormack was on her way home after a long day at work, and her front porch was dark as she approached the house.

Unaware that she was about to step into a life-threatening situation, the woman approached the front door with her pit bull, Arlo, at her side.

That’s when Arlo suddenly darted forward.

Unbeknownst to McCormack, a dangerous copperhead snake was coiled up beside her front porch.

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“It was in this leaf-like area over here, and it was recoiled back so it was going to strike,” McCormack told WTVF.

But Arlo wasn’t about to let his owner fall into danger. Instead, he snapped at the snake before it could get to McCormack.

“He got there before I could go any further, he grabbed it by the tail, and then just started kind of shaking it. While he was shaking it, it was biting his face, it got him three times for sure, possibly four.”

Severely injured but alive, the brave pup killed the snake before it could harm his owner. Rushing Arlo to the pet hospital, McCormack reflected on how thankful she was for her sweet pit bull.

“To think how much loyalty, and love he had for me, to risk his own life for mine, it’s really special,” she said, adding, “It makes me have more respect for him not just as a dog, but as a family member, somebody that protects me.”

Although the pup succeeded in defending McCormack, the snake bites left him in need of extensive care.

“Unfortunately it got him three good times before he finished the job,” McCormack said on Facebook. “He showed his loyalty and love tonight in a huge way, beyond blessed and thankful for my indestructible, brave best friend.”

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“I turned on the light and looked in the back seat,” McCormack said of the ride to the pet hospital, according to The Tennessean. “He looked like a completely different dog. I had to take his collar off because his throat was swelling so bad.”

With some medication, Arlo is expected to recover from the ordeal. Now McCormack just wants to raise awareness about the possibility of snake attacks, warning other pet-moms and dads about potential dangers.

But mostly, she is just glad to have Arlo back safe and sound. In a comment on a WKRN-TV Facebook post, McCormack posted a photo of Arlo and let those following the story know that Arlo “is starting to look and feel like himself again.”

The Western Journal reached out to Haley McCormack for comment but has not yet received a response. We will update this article if and when we do.

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Laura Stewart was an associate story editor and news and lifestyle contributor for The Western Journal.
Laura Stewart was an associate story editor and news and lifestyle contributor for The Western Journal.
Phoenix, AZ