She was totally surprised. She had only owned the dog for a few days, but she was certain that he was a gentle creature and was no threat to her loved ones. Yet, he was handling her child roughly. She was about to act, but then she saw something that made her reconsider. And as soon as she realized what was happening, she was stunned that she had considered doing something unthinkable.
Catherine Svilicic and her husband had a baby girl named Charlotte. A few months later, they both concluded that they wanted a new family member. But instead of making a new baby, they decided to give Charlotte a baby brother or sister who walked on four legs. This would give her a companion who was loyal, while teaching her about caring for something. But they wanted a specific type of dog.
The Svilicics wanted a dog with specific characteristics, so they considered buying a puppy straight from a breeder. But they also wanted to give a dog who didn’t have a home and opportunity of living in a home with a loving family. Eventually, they heard of a rescue dog who had come from a breeder. But the issue was that this particular breed had earned a bad rep for having a behavior that was unpredictable and aggressive.
The pooch was an adult male Doberman Pinscher. This type of animal was bred for personal protection, so ferocity and aggression were in his DNA. Those traits are certainly reflected in the breed’s reputation despite the fact that modern breeders have bred them to be a bit friendlier and docile. But clearly, it doesn’t help that most Dobermans are police or guard dogs. But Catherine discovered that there was something very unique about this dog.
Kerry Kinder, the owner of the Doberling Boarding Kennels in Atherton, Australia, had bred this Doberman. She had sold the pooch to someone, but later discovered that he was being abused so she got him back. His outlook wasn’t so good. He had broken ribs, which suggested he had been hit, and he was starving. Things were so bad that the vets considered putting the dog to sleep. But then Catherine came into his life.
Despite his difficult past, Catherine had found a spot in her heart for the dog the moment she met him. His personality put her at ease. So, despite all she knew, she took him in and called him Khan. She was looking forward to introducing him to her seventeen-month-old baby girl. But she wasn’t going to necessarily let her guard down when the new dog started living in the house. So, since she was taking a risk, she decided to implement a few safety measures.
Catherine and her husband kept a close eye on Khan from the moment he moved into their home. Meanwhile, Charlotte absolutely loved her four-legged brother, and he was calm, gentle, and well-behaved when he was around her. At this point, Catherine was sure she had picked the right dog, but she remained vigilant when the baby and the dog were together. Then, her entire perspective changed on one fateful day.
Four days after Khan became a part of the family, Catherine placed Charlotte in the yard so she could play with the dog. Everything seemed to be going okay, but then Khan started to act more aggressively towards Charlotte. Khan continued to push the baby girl with his muzzle, which had caught Catherine off guard. Then he behaved in a way that practically scared the living daylights out of her.
Khan grabbed the baby by her diaper and threw her three feet away. Catherine was mortified by what she had just witnessed, and for a second, she wasn’t sure what to do next. Then, she ran over and picked Charlotte up right away. She kind of expected Khan to begin attacking her too, but, the dog did something even more unusual. He yelped and ran back into the house. And that’s when Catherine saw the truth.
Catherine noticed a king brown snake slithering through the grass. She suddenly realized that Khan had seen the serpent and tried pushing the baby away, but when that failed, he threw her as far away as he could to protect her. "If I had not seen it with my own eyes, I would never have believed it," said Catherine. The dog might have been rough, but he saved the baby. Unfortunately, Khan didn’t escape without a scratch.
When Catherine ran into the house, she found Khan whimpering on the floor. She suddenly knew that he had gotten bit while trying to keep Charlotte safe. Realizing the serious threat that Australian wildlife posed, Catherine knew that Khan didn’t have a lot of time. She had to get him to the vet so he could receive a shot of anti-venom, but there was one issue.
Khan was a 90-pound dog, and Catherine was home alone with her baby. But that didn’t mean that she was going to just sit there and allow the dog that saved Charlotte to pass away. So, she gathered all of her strength and picked the injured pooch up. Then, she carried him to her car’s front seat. “If you asked me to carry his weight right now, I don’t think I’d be able to do it,” said Catherine. Now it was all up to the vet.
Catherine drove as quickly as possible. She even violated a few traffic laws, but she eventually made it. Then she rushed Khan to the vet where he was given some anti-venom. Catherine was desperate to know if her dog was going to make it, but the vet told her that they’d have to wait until the next day to see if the antidote would take effect. She went home without knowing if Khan would survive.
King brown snakes, also known as Mulga snakes, are the most common snakes in Australia. They’re also the most poisonous. Their venom isn’t a threat to an adult human, but it could take out a small child or a dog. Khan’s weight and size would allow him to survive. An expert believed the pooch survived because the snake couldn’t inject its venom entirely into his paw. Regardless, Catherine was beyond relieved.
Catherine stated: "If Khan wants a gold bowl, Khan gets it. We owe him for the rest of his life.” Kerry, who’s Khan’s breeder, knew he had it in him. She even noted that Khan’s grandfather saved a child in a similar predicament. But Khan was probably grateful to the Svilicic family for taking him in. "He was starving for attention and wanted to be loved because he came from an abused home, so I’m not surprised about what he has done at his new home."