A Very Good Boy called Pete, a foster dog, died bravely protecting his family from a bear while on a hike.

The adopted English Setter and his dog friends, who were on a hike with Me & My Shadow Pets daycare service, startled a black bear in the wilderness of New York State, who turned on the pack.

According to the husband of Cathi, who owns the doggy sitting service, the old boy valiantly held the bear off while he was able to shepherd the other dogs to safety.

Sharing an account of the incident, his human wrote:

Today we lost our brave, old man Pete. The dogs surprised a black bear just off the trail while we were hiking this morning. It must not have heard or smelled us with the pouring rain.

It felt threatened and turned around. Pete stepped up and held off the bear until I could get the other dogs to safety.

Once I was sure they were safe, I went back and scared the bear off, but Pete was gravely injured.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Below is an account from my husband of yesterdays pack walk. “Today we lost our brave, old man Pete. The dogs surprised a black bear just off the trail while we were hiking this morning. It must not have heard or smelled us with the pouring rain. It felt threatened and turned around. Pete stepped up and held off the bear until I could get the other dogs to safety. Once I was sure they were safe, I went back and scared the bear off, but Pete was gravely injured. I was able to get him back down to the main trail and, thanks to Cathi and Kate, we were able to get him in a car and to the hospital pretty quickly. He held on like a real trooper the whole time, and he was never alone in his pain. The x-rays revealed some pretty bad spinal damage that would mean he could never walk again, if he survived all the surgeries (not a certain thing at his age). We decided it was best to let him go this afternoon. Run free Pete, you no longer have all those aches and pains of old age. You had a great 18 months with us running the days away like you loved.” Please light a candle for Pete and remember that fostering and rescuing a dog can sometimes save you. Senior dogs have so much to give. Love you Petey. Save me some cheese for when we see each other again. ❤️????❤️

A post shared by Me & My Shadow Pets ???? (@mmspets) on

Documenting the extent of his injuries, the account continued:

I was able to get him back down to the main trail and, thanks to Cathi and Kate, we were able to get him in a car and to the hospital pretty quickly.

He held on like a real trooper the whole time and he was never alone in his pain.

The x-rays revealed some pretty bad spinal damage that would mean he could never walk again, if he survived all the surgeries (not a certain thing at his age).

A friend of the family shared a touching tribute to Twitter:

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Concluding, his adoptive family of 18 months said:

We decided it was best to let him go this afternoon.

Run free Pete, you no longer have all those aches and pains of old age. You had a great 18 months with us running the days away like you loved.

Pete has since been dubbed a hero, after his final story was shared online by humans who know how lucky we are to have dogs as man’s best friend.

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Me & My Shadow Pet Sitting/Facebook

Well-wishers have sent messages to the grieving family, saying Pete died a hero.

@alongcamemajor wrote:

Rest Easy Pete, true hero and textbook example of why dogs are such beautiful, loyal and strong beings

@thegoldensrule chimed in with their condolences:

We are so sorry for your loss. What a wonderful brave dog!!

The aptly handled @neverenoughlabradors shared:

Ohmygod!!!! My heart is broken for you. I can’t imagine how difficult this was for your husband to witness. What a beautiful dog and he’s a hero! I’m so sorry for your loss. Rest in Peace, Pete

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Some online observers, who’ve been criticised for being ‘insensitive’ pointed out it’s best to keep dogs on leads in the wild, but there’s no indication Pete wasn’t properly cared for by his humans.

All that’s left to do is thank the Dog Gods for a guy as cool as Pete.

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