Has an animal ever alerted you to a potentially dangerous situation?

Mudassir Ali
Jan 24, 2020 01:22 PM 0 Answers
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Mudassir Ali
- Jan 24, 2020 01:22 PM

A few years ago I still lived in an area of Los Angeles County known as Calabasas. The area was largely horse properties and most of my friends and neighbors were horse people including myself. I owned four horses, one being a five year old Arab named Super Spook…Spook for short, and he never failed to live up to his name while out riding. I also had a few very well trained imported dogs. Spook’s best buddy, the one that kept him most calm at home and out on rides was my Malinois, Bajnok. Spook and Bajnok would play for hours in his paddock.

Very near to where I lived is the former Paramount Ranch facility. Many westerns were filmed there and it still had a western town set. It sat well back off the road and was my favorite place to ride Spook because of his propensity to freak out at sirens, motorcycles and other loud noises. Back on the Ranch property there was little chance of him encountering those sounds.

One hot summer day, we were out for a ride and Bajnok was off leash nearby running and hanging with his bro. We had stopped for a break under a large tree and the three of us were lounging in the shade of it. I gave Bajnok some water and a couple slices of apple to Spook. Then it was time to head back to the house. As I was mounting the saddle, beginning to throw my right leg over, Bajnok became agitated and ran to rear of us and lunged at something. He yelped, I jumped down and took control of Spooks head for fear of him rearing up or kicking out, Bajnok leaped in the air off all fours, came back down and went into full attack mode on…you guessed it…a freaking Rattlesnake. I moved Spook several feet forward and watched the ensuing battle. Bajnok looked like a mongoose attacking a Cobra.

When the battle ended, Bajnok had taken four strikes, and the snake was history. Bajnok looked at me, walked up to Spook and collapsed. For the next few minutes, Spook kept nudging Bajnok to get up. It was surreal as I lifted Bajnok off the ground and laid him across the saddle, Spook looking back at us.

Had Bajnok not engaged that snake when he did, I would hate to think of how badly I would have been injured, or worse, had it struck Spook in a rear leg while I wasn’t yet fully in the saddle

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