Delilah and Buddy, two loyal dogs, jumped a gate and ran to the side of their beloved owner, Anand Ramcheron, when he was shot by hijackers on Friday night and fell to the ground in the driveway outside his home in Durban--reminding us of why a dog is man’s best friend.
The Boerbul, a large, South African mastiff, bred for the purpose of guarding homes and property, and the smaller cross-breed dog stayed with Anand Ramcheron and would not leave his side until the police and paramedics came to his rescue, the Independent reports.
Then, both dogs jumped into the ambulance, hoping to stay with Ramcheron’s while he was being taken to hospital.
Ramcheron, 53, remains in a critical condition in the Netcare St Augustine’s Hospital and was expected to undergo extensive surgery to stem internal bleeding.
Delilah and Buddy looked dejected and sad on Saturday when the Sunday Tribune interviewed Ramcheron’s wife, Namitha, at their Seaview home, where the tragedy had occurred the night before.
She said the couple had been preparing to leave for a prayer meeting in Greytown when two armed men arrived in a “bakkie,” the South African term for a small, open-bed pickup truck, and allegedly attacked both of them in their driveway.
Namitha Ramcheron told reporters that the men got out of the truck and one accosted her while the other shot Anand.
“I was standing in the garage. My husband opened the door before reversing into the driveway. All of a sudden this bakkie swerved in behind our car and two guys jumped out with guns. One ran to me and the other to Anand. The guy didn’t say anything – he just opened fire. It happened so quickly I couldn’t believe what was going on. I was frozen,” she said.
Her husband fell to the floor, as his hands became covered with blood from clutching the wound in his stomach. The hijacker pushed him out of the way before speeding off in their car.
“I was screaming and he was lying on the floor moaning. The two dogs jumped over a gate and came to his side. They wouldn’t move. They refused to leave us,” she told the reporters, with tears streaming down her face.
“I know they were trying to protect him. His dogs are everything to him. They really love him. They follow him everywhere,” she said.
ER24 News spokesman Derrick Banks said that when medics arrived at the scene, they found Anand lying on his side in the driveway, flanked on both sides by his dogs.
“He sustained a single gunshot wound to the abdomen and lost a significant amount of blood. Advanced life support paramedics stabilized him at the roadside,” he said.
He said when Anand was put in the ambulance, both dogs jumped in and it was difficult to get them out because they did not want to leave their beloved master, the Independent reports..
Namitha said this was the third time she and her husband had been hijacked. “Crime in this area is out of control. No one knows how bad it really is here. Apart from the hijackings, our house was broken into last year and while the criminals were inside they stabbed Buddy with a screwdriver as he was trying to drive them out,” she said.
Durban is the third largest city in South Africa, after Johannesburg and Cape Town, and has a population of over 3 million resident.
Police spokesman Jay Naicker said detectives were investigating the violent hijacking and confirmed that no arrests had been made.
In a May 2010 in anticipation of thousands of tourists arriving in South Africa for the World Cup, BBC Magazine reported in an article entitled, How Dangerous is South Africa?, “Each day an average of nearly 50 people are murdered. In addition to these 18,000 murders each year, there are another 18,000 attempted murders. One British newspaper wrote about, "Cape Town's culture of gangsters, drugs, rape, robbery and a murder every 25 minutes."
Anand Ramcheron underwent emergency surgery early on Saturday to remove the bullet. Delilah and Buddy are waiting hopefully for his return home.