Todd Lane was walking up to his home in Wilmington, N.C., Monday night with Skylar, his 12-year-old Pit Bull, when a man behind them said, “Gimme that.”
The stranger was referring to the money Lane had just won from a scratch-off lottery ticket. But before Lane could reach for his wallet, the robber started shooting.
Grazed by a bullet, Lane fell to the ground. Skylar immediately took action to protect his owner.
“He charged after the dude with the gun and that guy shot the dog four times,” Lane told WWAY. “They found four different shots in him.”
The robber fired at least eight shots before running off. Two shots were fired into Lane’s living room, where people were watching TV. Fortunately, no one inside the house was hurt.
And fortunately for Skylar, the hero dog survived the shooting. Two bullets grazed him. One went through his upper lip. But the other bullet shattered his front left paw, requiring reconstructive surgery so he can walk. Because Skylar has arthritis in his shoulder, amputation was not an option.
Lane’s niece, Tina King, launched a GoFundMe campaign to help raise funds to cover the expensive surgery. As of today, it’s raised nearly $4,000.
“Right now with the coronavirus a lot of people are short with money and it’s hard,” KIng told WWAY. “So it’s hard asking people for money, but a lot of people have given $5 and my sweet friend Courtney gave $500.”
Lane is grateful not only for Skylar but for the community’s generosity in helping to pay the hero dog’s veterinary bills. “It ain’t me that’s saved his life, it’s this community,” he told WWAY. “All the funds they have given me, all the support they have given me, and everything they’re doing for my dog has literally saved his life.”
Skylar was able to return home from the animal hospital yesterday. He’s recovering but will need another surgery.
The hero pit bull “saved me,” Lane told WWAY. “I mean, you always wonder, would your dog take a bullet for you? And I found the case out. He took four for me. He’s a great dog.”
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the Wilmington Police Department at 910-452-6120.
You can make a donation to help pay for Skylar’s vet bills through the Justice for Skylar – Vet Bill Assistance GoFundMe page.