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Small Maltese Dog Bravely Chase Off Coyotes and Saves Brother

Last Updated on June 6, 2023 by Dogs Vets

“Unlikely Hero: Small Maltese Dog Bravely Chase Off Coyotes to Protect Canine Sibling”


Courage Knows No Size: The Ten-Pound Dog Who Became a Hero”

In the realm of the animal kingdom, heroism knows no boundaries. Today, we bring to you an extraordinary tale of courage and loyalty demonstrated by an unlikely hero — a tiny 10-pound Maltese rescue dog named Vinny.

Vinny, despite being an 11-year-old dog with only three teeth, has proven that courage is not determined by size or physical strength. His owners, residing in Mission Viejo, California, report that he has always been a “scrapper”. On a fateful day, his bravery was tested, and Vinny’s unyielding spirit emerged victoriously.

Maltese Dog Bravely Chase Off Coyotes

“When we first brought him home, he didn’t hesitate to growl if he felt threatened,” David Macaluso, Vinny’s owner, shared with KTLA. “He’s always been a feisty little guy.”

Vinny’s feistiness turned out to be a life-saving trait for his canine sibling, Harley, in a dire situation that unfolded in their backyard. A lapse in vigilance left the doggy door open, leading to a harrowing encounter between Harley and two wild coyotes.

Reports from CBS Los Angeles narrate that Harley was lured into the backyard by an unusual noise, only to come face-to-face with the coyotes, who caught him by the neck. Hearing Harley’s terrified cries, Vinny sprang into action.

Despite his modest size and advanced age, Vinny ran into the yard, chasing off the coyotes with a deep, low-level growl that startled the large predators.

Maltese Dog Bravely Chase Off Coyotes

David Macaluso recounts this episode with evident amazement, saying, “Our little 10-pound, three-tooth, 11-year-old dog managed to scare off a 60-pound coyote. It’s genuinely extraordinary. He’s our little superhero.”

Harley, unfortunately, sustained lacerations from the coyote attack. However, thanks to Vinny’s prompt intervention, the wounds were not life-threatening. Today, Harley is on the path to recovery.

Vinny’s valor has earned him the honorary title of a “superhero” in the Macaluso household. His owners jokingly mentioned they would have celebrated his bravery with a steak, but given Vinny’s limited dental capabilities, they’re planning to get a cape for their “superhero” dog instead.

Vinny’s fearless act serves as a powerful reminder to all pet owners about the innate protective instincts of animals, especially dogs.

Maltese Dog Bravely Chase Off Coyotes and saves little brother

Macaluso hopes Vinny’s story will inspire pet owners to be extra vigilant about their pet’s safety, reinforcing the need for secure pet doors and safe outdoor spaces.

For further information on pet safety and preventing coyote encounters, visit The Humane Society and Project Coyote.

Remember, heroes come in all shapes and sizes, just like our friend Vinny. Let his story inspire you to respect the power and courage of even the smallest among us.


  1. KTLA. (2023). Tiny 10-pound dog chases away coyote to save his brother. [online] Available at: [Accessed 6 Jun. 2023].
  2. CBS Los Angeles. (2023). Courageous Canine: 10-pound dog chases off coyotes to save brother. [online] Available at: [Accessed 6 Jun. 2023].
  3. The Humane Society of the United States. (n.d.). Coyote Hazing. [online] Available at: [Accessed 6 Jun. 2023].
  4. Project Coyote. (n.d.). Keeping pets and livestock safe. [online] Available at: [Accessed 6 Jun. 2023].




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