A Connecticut family's dog is being credited with saving the life of his owners' baby girl, who had stopped breathing.
On Monday night, Kelly Dowling put her 9-month-old daughter, who had been battling a cold and not feeling well, down in her crib to sleep.
Henry, her 8-year-old Boston terrier, kept barging into the sleeping baby’s nursery and waking her up. Frustrated because her daughter needed to rest, Dowling was "getting so fed up with him."
"He was not acting like himself, he kept going back in," Dowling said. "It seemed very belligerent and unusual for him."
Normally, when Henry is scolded, he is embarrassed and hides under the bed and you don't see him for a while, Dowling said. That night, however, he was persistent.
Moments later, Dowling said she noticed something wasn’t right with her baby, who had stopped breathing.
"She started turning blue and just really choking on, you know, whatever it was stuck in there," Dowling said.
The frantic parents rushed the baby to Connecticut Children’s Medical Center where doctors were able to clear the build-up in her throat before things got worse.
"I don't know what would have happened if he hadn't woken her," Dowling wrote in a Twitter thread, detailing her ordeal. "We don't deserve dogs."
The following day, she shared an update on the baby's health, writing "(she) is doing much better today and we are home with Henry, who bravely held the fort all night even though he is scared of the dark."
Dr. John Brancato, medical director for the ER at Connecticut Children's, noted this time of year is when children typically come down with upper respiratory infections.
U.S. & World
News from around the country and around the globe
Brancato said while he's read about stories of pets saving their human family members, this one is a first for the hospital and serves as an important reminder for parents to know the signs of when their child is in distress.
"Their nose is flaring, the little knots between the collarbones will sink in the stomach and chest are moving opposite each other," he explained.
As for Henry, Dowling said he’s been getting plenty of treats for saving the day.
"We give him a stocking every year for Christmas and I'm going to have to refill the stocking before Christmas (this year), because he's gotten all of his toys early," she said.