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Hero dog scares away attacking bear along Yellowstone River saving owner

  • Kate Cholewa, 53, of Montana was walking along Yellowstone River with her 12-year-old dog Carmen when a bear attacked her on Monday
  • Her hero black Labrador mix started barking, the bear backed off and Cholewa fled to safety
  • Terrifying encounter left her with non-life threatening injuries including a cut on her head which is likely from a bite, wildlife officials said  

By Myriah Towner For Dailymail.com

Published: 21:02 EST, 14 October 2015 | Updated: 03:29 EST, 15 October 2015

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A hero dog scared away an attacking bear and saved her owner's life while they were on a Montana trail.

Kate Cholewa, 53, of Paradise Valley was walking along the Yellowstone River with her 12-year-old dog Carmen when a bear attacked her on Monday.

Her black Labrador mix started barking and the bear retreated allowing Cholewa, who was bleeding from her head, to flee to safety in her car where she contacted police.

Kate Cholewa (pictured), 53, of Paradise Valley was walking along the Yellowstone River with her 12-year-old dog Carmen (pictured) when a bear attacked her on Monday

Kate Cholewa (pictured), 53, of Paradise Valley was walking along the Yellowstone River with her 12-year-old dog Carmen (pictured) when a bear attacked her on Monday

Her black Labrador mix (pictured) started barking and the bear backed off allowing Cholewa to flee to safety

Her black Labrador mix (pictured) started barking and the bear backed off allowing Cholewa to flee to safety

'I just saw it and I was on the ground,' Cholewa told the Bozeman Daily Chronicle of the moment she was attacked by the bear. 'I was thinking, "I'm dead"'.

The terrifying, but brief encounter occurred in a brushy area at the Point of Rocks Fishing Access Site and left her with a cut on her head that required staples from what is said to likely be a bite, according to wildlife officials.

Cholewa was eventually transported to a hospital in Livingston and suffered from non-life threatening injuries including a bruises on her face and cuts on her hands.

The terrifying, but brief encounter occurred in a brushy area at the Point of Rocks Fishing Access Site and left Chowela (pictured) with a cut on her head that required staples from what is said to likely be a bite, according to wildlife officials

The terrifying, but brief encounter occurred in a brushy area at the Point of Rocks Fishing Access Site and left Chowela (pictured) with a cut on her head that required staples from what is said to likely be a bite, according to wildlife officials

'I got off easy', the writer said all thanks to Carmen, who she adopted from the Missoula Humane Society more than ten years ago.

Carmen, who has been with her ever since, had a torn ACL and as a result Cholewa was told her about a year ago that her dog only had six months to live.

However, her hero dog, through therapy and other measures, has been doing just fine.

Cholewa said that one of her favorite places to take Carmen for walks is along the Point of Rocks Fishing Access Site, where the ground in the brushy area is easier on Carmen's injured leg.

The terrifying, but brief encounter occurred in a brushy area at the Point of Rocks Fishing Access Site (pictured) and left her with a cut on her head that required staples from what is said to likely be a bite, according to wildlife officials

The terrifying, but brief encounter occurred in a brushy area at the Point of Rocks Fishing Access Site (pictured) and left her with a cut on her head that required staples from what is said to likely be a bite, according to wildlife officials

As of Tuesday, the Point of Rocks Fishing Access Site had been closed until further notice.

The incident is being investigated by the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks.

On its website, FWP wrote that it 'reminds the public that bears often seek foods at lower elevations along the Yellowstone and other southwest Montana rivers during this time of year.'

Authorities do not know if the bear involved in Monday's incident was a black bear or a grizzly bear, according to KBZK.

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