June 11, 2020 | 3:59pm
A Florida man got into “a tug-of-war match” with an alligator that grabbed his dog and pulled it into the river this week, according to a news report.
Trent Tweddale was walking 6-year-old Loki on their farm in Wesley Chapel, Pasco County, on Monday morning when the rescue pup “had his front paws in the river” and a nearly 13-foot-long gator attacked, he told WFLA.
Tweddale, a former Army staff sergeant, jumped into action.
“I grabbed the dog’s collar to try to pull him back and I ended up in a tug of war match with this gator and the gator was not letting go,” he told the outlet. “So I let go of the collar and I got about knee-deep into the water and started pounding on the gator’s head until he eventually let go.”
While Tweddale got away with minor scratches, Loki’s front leg was nearly severed and he needed emergency surgery, according to the report.
“When I pulled him back up, the bones were out and it looks like the arm was just hanging by a shred,” Tweddale told the station. “They put metal plates and screws in and were able to reconstruct it that way. We’re hoping that he can regain full use of his paws after this.”
Now, Tweddale is so determined to catch the offending reptile that he set a trap with the help of the Florida Fish and Wildlife service.
“The trapper did not have any bait, so I grabbed one of my roosters and we used him as bait for the trap,” he told the outlet. “We haven’t had any luck yet. We love our dog a lot and I’d fight tooth and nail for him.”