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Pets

A hair-trigger of the dog! Iowa man ‘shot by his Labrador-pit bull mix while they were playing’

Richard Remme, 51, says his dog Balew first disabled the safety mechanism then stepped on the trigger of his pistol, which he had tucked into his belly band

PUBLISHED : Friday, 11 May, 2018, 3:25am
UPDATED : Friday, 11 May, 2018, 3:33am

With best friends like these, who needs enemies? An Iowa man says his dog inadvertently shot him while they were playing around at his home in Fort Dodge on Wednesday.

Richard Remme, 51, told police he was goofing around with his pit bull-Labrador mix, Balew, on his sofa when the freak accident occurred. 

“I carry [a gun],” he explained to The Messenger. “It’s a Ruger 9 mm, and it’s got a safety on it. I was lying on the couch, and we were horsing around, me and the dog. And I was tossing him off my lap, and he was jumping back on my lap.”

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The gun was tucked into a belly band Remme had on under his bib overalls, he said, and as Balew bounded onto and off the sofa, his paws managed to first knock off the safety mechanism, then hit the trigger.

“It has a trigger safety as well as a thumb safety, and he managed to hit both of them, and it discharged and went into my leg, did no major damage to anything.”

Remme initially felt no pain in his leg, only a burning sensation on his stomach, but called for an ambulance when he realised he was bleeding. He was treated there and released later that day.

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Police Chief Roger Porter said that Remme had licences to own and carry a gun, and warned gun-owners that “Guns aren’t toys, and they can go off.”

As for Balew, he might have shot his owner, but he’s no hardened criminal.

“The dog’s a big wuss,” Remme said. “The poor dog laid down beside me and cried, because he thought he was in trouble for doing something wrong. He’s a pit-lab mix. He’s afraid of the dark, he’s afraid of water.”