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Here’s another great reason to buy a dog: he might one day save you from a shark attack.

James White was fishing in Sonoma County, California from the shoreline when he felt an intense tug on the line. He spent about 10 minutes struggling to reel the line in, only to regret it. There was a 6-foot-long seven-gill shark at the other end.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area

James went to remove the hook from the shark, but instead, the animal twisted and fell to the ground before sinking its teeth into James’ ankle.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area

“Immediately there was blood everywhere, the first bite punctured an artery. The pressure was intense,” White told NBC Bay Area.

White yelled out for help, and luckily, someone heard him: his one-year-old pitbull Darby, who was waiting in the car parked a few yards away.

Hearing his human’s cries for help, Darby somehow managed to open one of the car doors. He came rushing down to James to save the day.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area

First, Darby bit into the shark’s gills, but that had the unintended effect of making the shark bite down even harder.

“I told him, ‘No, back off,'” James recalled. “And then he repositioned and grabbed it by the tail. He literally ran up the hill with it and pulled it off my leg.”

At that point, James tossed the shark back into the water, and it swam away. If it weren’t for Darby, he says, he would have been a lot worse off, as the shark could have potentially severed an artery.

Needless to say, Darby is now a family hero.