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Florida man wrestles gator to save dog

Richard Wilbanks wrestles his dog away from a gator.
Richard Wilbanks wrestles his dog away from a gator. (Florida Wildlife Federation)

ESTERO, Fla – A man walking his Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy along a waterway in Estero saved the dog’s life after it was grabbed by an alligator, according to a report from WINK News.

The encounter was caught on a wildlife camera from the Florida Wildlife Federation and the fSTOP Foundation. The cameras usually capture videos of deer or bobcats.

Richard Wilbanks told WINK News that his instincts kicked in when his dog, Gunner, was grabbed.

“They’re like children to us, so there was no second thought whatsoever,” Wilbanks said.

Wilbanks said this was a learning experience, and he’ll keep Gunner on a leash. The dog is a little hesitant to go near the water now.

Wilbanks said his hands were cut prying the dog from the gator’s mouth.