Raleigh, N.C. — Julie Pribyl says she is thankful for two people who intervened Tuesday morning when she and her 5-year-old golden retriever, Daisy, were attacked by two other dogs in the Wood Valley Drive neighborhood in north Raleigh.
"One went immediately for her neck, and the other attacked her from the side," Pribyl said Wednesday. "They pulled me onto the ground onto my stomach and were pulling me into the woods."
"They relentlessly would not stop attacking her. I kicked and screamed," she added. "I yelled 'Help me! Help me! Help me!' at the top of my lungs. I knew I couldn't let go of her leash, and I had to pull very hard."
That's when an employee with the North Raleigh Tree & Bucket Truck Services who was working in the area heard Pribyl and came to her rescue.
The worker, who did not want to be identified, grabbed a shovel, and a neighbor who also heard the commotion used an umbrella to get the dogs – a pit bull-mix and a foxhound – away from Pribyl and Daisy.
Pribyl was scraped up a bit but wasn't seriously injured. Daisy, however, has months of healing ahead from injuries she received to her ear, several puncture wounds to the neck and elsewhere on her body.
"It would have been a different story had they not showed up," Pribyl said of the two men.
"I have nothing but the utmost respect for that man," Kevin Kenny, who owns the tree removal company, said of his employee. "There's a guy who had everything to lose, and he didn't even stop to think. He just ran into harm's way and saved that woman."
The dogs, which Pribyl said she has never seen before, ran off, leaving Wake County animal control officers to search for them and their owner.
But the story doesn't end there.
After WRAL reporter Amanda Lamb and photojournalist Chad Flowers interviewed Pribyl Wednesday morning, a neighbor flagged them down after finding a stray dog.
Lamb called the owner, Shep Wells, and also Pribyl, who identified the dog as one from Tuesday's attack.
Wells admitted to letting the dog, Crosby, run free Tuesday and Wednesday, along with another dog. He said he had let them out to go to the bathroom and that he got distracted.
Animal control officers ended up charging Wells with two misdemeanor counts of creating a nuisance – charges that each carry a $200 fine.
Wells said that although his dog has been involved in "scuffles" with his other dogs, he was surprised to hear that they attacked Daisy and Pribyl.
"I'm really sorry about the whole thing," he said. "I'm willing to make it right, whatever needs to be done."