LYNN, Mass. - A man is being praised for jumping in to save a police officer's family and dog when another dog began attacking.
Nahant Police Department Officer Timothy Furlong was on duty when he got a call from his 11-year-old son, who told him the family’s dog, a German shepherd named Lucy, had just been attacked by another dog near the family’s home in Lynn, Massachusetts.
Furlong rushed over and saw that a complete stranger had already intervened to save his dog, a German shepherd named Lucy, who was out for a walk with Furlong’s son, daughter and his wife.
A pit bull had gotten out from a nearby home and clamped down on Lucy.
A man named O.P. Miller had been on his way to the gym when he drove by, saw the attack, and instinctively jumped out of his car and toward the chaotic situation.
“I could hear a young girl screaming bloody murder,” Miller told WFXT.
The family says several people passed by without getting involved.
“When I got up to corner, I locked eyes with (the girl) and she come running and I could see the tears pouring down her face,” Miller said. “I spun around and rushed the dog. I grabbed at (the dog). They were both on their hind legs at that point and I grabbed on his collar. I was hitting him, or scratching him and poking him. He was locked on good.”
Miller had never seen a dog clamped down on another, but he could see and hear the two children who were with Lucy when the attack happened.
“When you see a little girl screaming and crying in the street you stop,” Miller said. “That's pretty simple. My adrenaline was rushing.”
Furlong told WFXT that he is grateful.
“We put ourselves in danger as police officers to help people, to have people do that for your own family, it’s overwhelming,” he said.
Miller said the pit bull finally released from Lucy when he began twisting and yanking on its collar, essentially choking the dog to get it to stop.
Furlong says his two kids and wife are also grateful to the stranger who risked his own safety to save their dog.
“The thing that bothered me the most, I was told my son was trying to wave down passing vehicles and it took several cars to pass before this one gentleman stopped,” Furlong said. “It’s heartbreaking to think about a young boy waving his arms asking for help and no one helped.”
"I just knew they needed help and I knew I could do something,” Miller said.
It’s still unclear where that pit bull is at the moment. Lynn animal control has taken over the investigation.
Furlong says the family dog is sore but she didn’t suffer any serious injuries.
Furlong had the opportunity to shake Miller’s hand at the scene, and plans to officially honor the good Samaritan for his actions.
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