Frail, Elderly Woman Terrified of Neighbor’s Pit Bull–Until the ‘Bad Dog’ Saves Her Life

December 21, 2019 Updated: February 10, 2020
From the Archives: This story was last updated in December 2019

While for many people, dogs are a man’s best friend, for others they are a source of fear or even outright terror. Some large dog breeds have garnered a bad reputation as a result of their association with aggression or organized dog fighting, but many people have pleaded that these reputations of hostility are unfounded.

A pit bull named Simba who lives in Sweden with his owner, Arjanit Mehana, displayed his innate kindness and sensitivity in a good deed that went viral on the internet. Simba is not only a sweetheart; he managed to save a life.

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My big boy 4 years now….!!!! #amstaff #pitbull #bluenose #dogs

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Mehana naturally believed that his own dog was “wonderful” but had picked up on the fact that some tenants within his apartment complex were reluctant to interact with Simba. One woman in particular, a frail, elderly neighbor who lived alone, was particularly terrified of the dog.

“[Simba] always tried to greet her, but she called him mean and looked at him with fear,” Mehana explained to The Dodo. “She never liked him, because he was a ‘bad’ breed.”

In late November 2019, as Mehana and Simba were returning home after a walk together, Mehana noticed that Simba was behaving strangely. “He stopped,” Mehana recalled. “He began to bark and run to the door where the neighbor lives.”

“She said, ‘Thank you for hearing me … nice doggie'" ❤

تم النشر بواسطة ‏‎The Dodo‎‏ في الأربعاء، ٤ ديسمبر ٢٠١٩

Mehana, confused, tugged on Simba’s leash in an effort to encourage him toward his own front door. But Simba was distracted; he wouldn’t budge.

Mehana picked Simba up to carry him home, but as he did so, he realized what had piqued the pup’s interest. Leaning toward the neighbor’s door, Mehana heard a desperate voice emanating from inside the apartment. “She said, ‘Please don’t go,’” Mehana recalled.

Luckily, the neighbor’s door was unlocked, so the young man and his dog stepped inside. They walked into an upsetting scene; the elderly woman had fallen, broken her hip, and was lying on the floor unable to move.

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She had been alone, calling out to her neighbors for two full days. Simba had been the only creature to hear the elderly woman’s cry for help.

Mehana called for an ambulance, and the kindly pair stayed by the woman’s side until paramedics arrived. During that time, the previously nervous neighbor’s fear of Simba completely dissolved; she was filled with gratitude for the dog that saved her life.

“She said, ‘Thank you for hearing me,’” Mehana explained. “I thought she was talking to me at first. But then she said, ‘No, not you; the nice doggie.’”

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Chill mode. #amstaff #pitbull #bull #thedodo

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As the neighbor received care for her injuries, Simba was hailed as a home-turf hero by Mehana’s other neighbors in the apartment complex. The sweet-natured dog suddenly received a plethora of smiles, gifts, and positive affirmation.

While grateful for the attention, Mehana hopes that sharing Simba’s story will ultimately help convince even more people to reconsider their opinion of the breed.

According to the American Kennel Club, pit bull terriers are smart, confident, good-natured companions to their human counterparts. Their courage, as per the AKC, is “proverbial.”

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Who let the dogs out! #amstaff #bluenose #simba #pitbull

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A well-bred and well-socialized pit bull, rather than being a source of fear or worry, will be a loyal and trustworthy friend to the end; Simba displayed these traits to perfection when he responded to his elderly neighbor’s cries and saved her from further suffering.

“I hope this event will make people see ‘bully breeds’ differently,” Mehana reflected, speaking to The Dodo. “We, as human beings, must deserve their loyalty and love.”

To that end, Mehana often shares adorable snaps of Simba living his best life on his Instagram page. It seems Simba really is a man’s—and in this case, a neighbor’s—best friend.