9 True Stories That Prove You Should Never Leave A Gun Where A Dog Can Reach

Chocolate Lab next to a Cooey12 gauge single-shot shotgun, camouflage coat and boots, Duncan, British Columbia, Canada.

Never leave a loaded weapon where a dog can reach it! (Photo credit: Getty Images)

Wherever you stand when it comes to the gun control debate, we can all agree that there should never be a situation where a dog could accidentally fire a firearm.

Most responsible gun owners know this and would never leave a loaded gun with the safety turned off in an area where their beloved dogs could injure themselves or anyone around them.

But even responsible gun owners can make an error of judgment or divert their attention, as was the case in some of the true stories below.

If you have a gun in the house, or if you like to take your dog on a hunt, remember these mishaps that you absolutely cannot afford to be distracted when your firearm is ready to use, especially when your dog is in the neighbourhood.

Here are nine true stories that prove you should never leave a loaded gun with the safety of where a dog might get.

1. The Pizza Man

A pizza delivery boy in Ohio named Ryan Brill delivered an order to the home of a man named Anthony Wulf.

When Wulf heard the knock at the door, he went to put his pistol on the table. At that moment, Wulf’s dog ran to the door and somehow threw the gun to the floor. The weapon fired and hit Brill in the leg.

Fortunately, the injury was not life-threatening. However, Brill went to the hospital and had to walk with crutches for three weeks.

Why load a gun with the safety off to open the door for a pizza, especially when you know there’s an excited dog running around? Why not position the gun higher so your dog can’t knock it over?

With a little common sense, this accident could have been prevented.

2. Propped up in the wrong place

A pheasant shoot.  An alert black trained hunting dog, a retriever next to a man with a gun on his knees.

(Photo credit: Getty Images)

Even gun owners with training and years of experience sometimes forget the importance of basic gun safety, and the results can be deadly. This was the case in Russia where Sergei Terekhov, a 64-year-old experienced fighter who had a firearms license and was completely sober, made a fatal mistake.

He rested his loaded shotgun to his knee as he sat next to his truck. One of his hunting dogs got excited, jumped out of the truck and accidentally pulled the trigger on the gun, causing a shot in the abdomen of Terekhov. It was a fatal injury.

You should never point the barrel of a loaded gun at yourself or anyone else, especially if there is an excited dog nearby.

3. Trigger pulls the trigger

A hunter in Indiana named Allie Carter was hunting with her dog, who happened to be named Trigger. She made the mistake of laying her 12-gauge shotgun on the ground with it loaded and the safety off.

Activate the chocolate Labrador chose that moment to step on the trigger, causing an explosion in Carter’s foot. Fortunately, Carter only suffered minor foot injuries.

Of course, the whole accident could have been avoided if she hadn’t left her loaded gun for her dog to step on.

4. Shotgun on the ground

Hunting dog near shotgun and trophies, horizontal, outdoors

(Photo credit: Getty Images)

Almost exactly the same thing happened to a hunter in Iowa named William Rancourt. He was hunting with some friends when one of the hunters left his loaded shotgun on the ground. One of the hunting dogs stepped on the gun and fired a burst of bird bullets into Rancourt’s back.

Fortunately, there was some distance between the fighter and the weapon. The shot didn’t do as much damage as it would if he were closer. Rancourt survived the incident and was treated for his injuries in hospital.

Again, never leave a loaded weapon where a dog, or anyone else, could step on it and accidentally fire it.

5. Shot in the Ass

A man in New Zealand was hunting with friends when he got into the back seat of a vehicle next to a .22 bolt-action rifle. Everyone in the group assumed the gun wasn’t loaded, but when the man’s dog jumped into the car, the pup accidentally pulled the trigger and fired the gun.

The bullet went through the seat and hit the man in the left buttock. He had to be flown to a hospital by helicopter and survived, although he was in extreme pain.

Sometimes in a group situation it can be difficult to keep track of who has unloaded their weapon and people can get confused. It is important to be responsible for your own firearm and always double or even triple check to make sure the weapon cannot be fired accidentally and hurt someone.

6. Shot in the boat

This Black Labrador Retriever is just in pure canine heaven on the bow of the Jon Boat, anticipating jumping into the water to retrieve a duck.  Ducks aren't in season right now, but she doesn't know that.

(Photo credit: Getty Images)

Cars and boats can be especially dangerous when it comes to loaded guns and dogs, as there isn’t much room to move without stepping on them or bumping into things. This was the case when a young hunter in Minnesota near Federal Dam had his loaded shotgun in his boat.

His dog jumped aboard and accidentally pulled the trigger. The man was shot in the right lower leg and was later taken to hospital. He was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

There was no need to safely unload his shotgun if he wasn’t ready to fire, especially on a boat with a dog.

7. Shot in the ass in the boat

A man in Utah was hunting with his dog and a friend near the Great Salt Lake. When he got out of his boat, he put his 12-gauge shotgun at the bow. While the man was setting up some decoys in the water, his dog jumped onto the bow and stepped on the gun, sending the bird shot into the man’s butt.

Because the man was about ten feet away from the weapon and wearing waders, his injuries weren’t as serious as they could have been, but doctors had to remove 27 more bullets from his behind.

The man did not need to have his weapon loaded and ready while he was setting up decoys. He could have easily loaded it and turned off the safety when ready to hunt instead of leaving it somewhere it could hurt someone.

8. Only one hand to pet

Male hunter with rifle and hunting dog hunting for prey in the field.

(Photo credit: Getty Images)

Sometimes even your hands aren’t a safe place for a loaded gun when dogs are around.

A man in France named Rene was hunting with his three dogs when two of them ran after a deer. The third dog was young and new to the hunt, and instead of running after the deer, he stayed behind.

At one point, the pup jumped on his human and pulled the trigger on the shotgun. The blast blew off part of the man’s hand, which later had to be amputated in hospital.

The man did not hold the dog responsible. He admitted that he should have turned off security in the first place. Now he will have to pet three dogs with just one hand.

Always engage security until ready to fire. Even if you’re holding a gun, it could still be within your dog’s reach and accidents will happen.

9. Driving Shotgun

A Florida man named Billy E. Brown was driving to a hunting spot with a friend. His Bulldog, Eli, sat in the front seat of the truck between the two men, along with the gun. At one point, Eli got excited and bumped into the gun, knocking it over and making it fire.

Brown was shot just above the knee and was taken to hospital in critical condition. So many things could have been done to prevent this. The gun shouldn’t have been loaded. Security should have been on. The firearm could have been stowed in the back, away from any chance of being knocked over.

There’s no reason a dog should sit next to a loaded gun that could go off after being bumped.

Have you ever heard of a dog accidentally shooting someone? If you own a gun, how do you make sure your dog never has an accident? Let us know in the comments below!

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