British Columbia

Pierce Orminston stabs bear with kitchen knife to protect pet dog

When Pierce Orminston saw his dog being attacked by a huge black bear, he knew exactly what to do.

'It smelled like a mixture of mould and blood and fish'

Pierce Orminston: 'It smelled like a mixture of mould and blood and fish' 1:57

A Port Coquitlam teen stabbed a bear in his backyard with a kitchen knife to save his beloved wheaten terrier.

Pierce Orminston, 15, let his terrier, Dublin, out behind his home last Wednesday when she started barking. When he went to see what was going on, he saw a large black bear attacking her.

Orminston said he grabbed a pot and a kitchen spoon to scare the bear off, like he's done before, but this one wouldn't spook.

"I started hitting the bear in the head with a pot. Then I dropped the pot and tried to tackle it and pushed it and nothing happened," he said.

Orminston said he ran back inside the house to grab a six-inch kitchen knife; he stabbed the bear, grabbed his dog and ran into the house.

The bear ran around the yard, flipping over furniture before it took off.

Orminston said he especially remembers the bear's smell.

"It smelled like a mixture of mould and blood and fish," he said. "It was probably one of the grossest things I've ever smelled."

Bear encounters in Ormiston's yard aren't unusual; he said he sees them from time to time. 

They're usually in the wooded area behind his house, and every once in a while they'll come into his yard. But the bears he usually sees are small, and this one was huge.

Conservation officers can't believe Ormiston — and his dog — walked away without a scratch.

"Definitely very lucky. A bear in that type of situation could have reacted and the person could have been seriously injured or killed," said conservation officer Todd Hunter.

Port Coquitlam residents say bear sightings are on the rise this year. Ormiston's next door neighbour had a scary encounter last night while he was in his car.

"The bear came running from around the corner right here. I must have spooked it, so it decided to jump on top of the car," said Mike Hughes.

"It jumped up and down, I revved the engine, honked the horn and it took off."

Conservation officers said they believe the bear that Orminston stabbed either died, or wandered off and is now recovering somewhere in the woods.

If it came back, Ormiston said he would react the same way.

"I couldn't stand by and watch. I'd need to react. I couldn't watch someone get attacked by a bear," he said.

It seems like Dublin understands how lucky she is. She hasn't left Ormiston's side since she was attacked.

With files from Jesse Johnston

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