NORTH KINGSTOWN, RI — It could have been David and Goliath as a small, bulky raccoon sent two big Dobermans — 90 and 60 pounds each — running for protection.
In the old biblical story of a small boy against a giant, a rock knocks down the towering man. In this case, it was simply a gash by a fearless raccoon that set the hunt for these muscular, fast, and elegant dogs that can stand over two feet tall.
Seeking refuge inside the house, Shadow and Samantha encountered their landlord Mary Shaw at the door as she defied the hunt for vermin who dodged an escape route under her porch, disappearing as she walked away. occupied small scratches on large dogs.
“To me, it’s so much the story, Shadow is like whoosh and sweet. Samantha is the hunter,” Shaw said.
It may be the story of survival and escape that will earn Shadow the Nationwide Insurance Co.’s 2022 ‘Hambone Prize’ at 90 pounds. He is one of twelve finalists from across the country who are participating through October 17 in the company’s annual online crowd-sourcing contest (tinyurl.com/hambne) featuring similar stories from the pet insurance claim. most unusual of the year. Site visitors read the stories and vote for their favorite.
Mary and her husband, Bruce, were enjoying their golden years in the natural beauty of their Rhode Island home when the opportunity to adopt a handsome Doberman presented itself. They jumped at the chance and started calling him Shadow because of the way he was following Bruce.
Shadow may look fierce but is full of goofiness, quickly connecting with the family’s pack of pooches, including her new best friend, Samantha, a 65-pound female Doberman, Shaw said.
“She’s feisty – take on Shadow, no problem. They can play rough, but they’re best friends and they work as a team,” laughed Mary Shaw. “If anything looks suspicious, Shadow barks an alarm for Samantha . Samantha will come immediately to check if anything needs to be done and take care of business.
The pair had gone about their routine pretty well until an unusually large woodland creature surprised them both – and led to this Hambone-nominated story.
Shadow and Samantha set out to explore the garden as they would any other day. Suddenly, Shaw heard Shadow’s alarm barking and went to the back deck to call the dogs. To her amazement, a parade of animals rushed towards her – Samantha, who usually doesn’t run away from a challenge in the lead, followed by Shadow…and a huge raccoon chasing them both.
Luckily, the fat raccoon disappeared below deck after seeing Mary. She brought the pooches inside and gave them a thorough checkup to make sure they were okay. Samantha had a small mark on her nose – probably a bite or a scratch, but Shadow seemed fine.
“I looked at Shadow and saw nothing,” recalls Mary. She contacted authorities from the Department of Environmental Management and immediately took the two dogs to their veterinarian as a precaution.
Later, she sees an unseen wound at first that was on Shadow’s shoulder. It required another trip to the vet, anesthesia to calm him down while the area was cleaned, and then updated plans.
“Although the scratch looked minor, the skin was actually torn away from the muscle under the skin and required stitches,” Shaw said.
What was going through those dogs’ heads, Shaw thought, especially Shadow. “He’s a bit of a wimp…one time he got worried and barked an alarm at a piece of rope,” she said.
“I really strongly believe he was protecting Samantha, like, ‘I don’t want to do this, but I won’t let anything happen to you,'” she said.