Golden Gate Estates family says bear killed dog

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NAPLES, Fla.- A Golden Gate Estates family says their dog was killed by a bear.

They heard the dog barking early in the morning but didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary. A short while later, they heard what they described as a huge ruckus and then heard their dog barking and crying.

Steve Reidy ran outside with a .40 caliber handgun and a flashlight. Minutes later, he noticed eyes staring back at him from the wooded area near his home and realized it was a bear.

Reidy says he wanted to dive into the woods and rescue his dog, but he realized there was a possibility he could lose his own life.

Reidy and friends searched for about six hours.  They traced a blood trail to a wooded spot across from some water and eventually discovered his dog, Piper.

Piper was a rescue dog. Reidy said she came from an abusive home and overcame her fear of men to become a beloved pet in the Reidy family.

Both Steve Reidy and his wife Alyssa said they hope to raise awareness of bears in the area, and not just the dangers to pets. The couple says they worry that a bear could attack one of their children or others in the area.

FWC released a statement to WINK News saying:

A person has the right to take action to defend themselves or another person from any species of wildlife if they believe their action is necessary to avoid an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury to themselves or another person.

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