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Watch: Bald Eagle Swoops Down and Snatches Small Dog

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As a wildlife enthusiast, I have seen many amazing things in nature, but one recent incident that caught my attention was a video of a bald eagle swoops down and snatches a small dog before soaring away.

Bald Eagle Swoops Down and Snatches Small Dog

Edit 05/17/2023: We received a few messages that the animals in this instance are not a bald eagle (but a golden eagle) and a dog (but a lamb). We are currently re-investigating the story, which was firstly featured by tyerese on instagram. We found another source mentioning the instance, where a dog was returned after being attacked by an eagle.

Source: tyrese / Instagram

At first glance, it might seem like a terrifying moment for the dog and its owner, but as I delved deeper into the story, I realized that it was a remarkable display of the power and grace of these incredible birds.

Key Points

  • Bald eagles are one of North America’s largest birds of prey and possess impressive physical characteristics that make them skilled hunters. 
  • Recently, a bald eagle was witnessed swooping down and snatching a small dog, which is a rare but not unheard-of occurrence.
  • While bald eagles primarily feed on fish, they prey on small mammals, including pets, which can be concerning for pet owners. 
  • The bald eagle taking the small dog was likely due to the bird mistaking the dog for prey or scavenging for food. 

The Remarkable Display of Power and Grace

Bald Eagle Swoops Down and Snatches Small Dog

As someone who deeply admires the natural world, I have witnessed countless awe-inspiring moments. However, a particular occurrence recently stood out: a bald eagle gracefully descended, seizing a small dog in its talons, and swiftly taking off into the sky. Although it may seem frightening to the dog and its owner, further reflection on the event revealed to me the magnificence and strength of these majestic birds.

Bald eagles are one of North America’s largest birds of prey, known for their sharp talons, impressive wingspan, and keen eyesight. They are skilled hunters and feed primarily on fish, but they have been known to prey on small mammals, including rabbits, squirrels, and even other birds.

The incident of a bald eagle picking up a small dog may seem rare, but it is not uncommon for bald eagles to target small pets. They often mistake the pet for prey or scavenged for food.

However, in this instance, the bald eagle quickly released the dog after realizing its mistake and was safely returned to its owner. Yes, you read that right, Zoe was found 4 miles from home and reunited with her owners after the event.

While it may be concerning for pet owners to hear about bald eagles targeting small animals, it’s important to remember that these birds are a vital part of the ecosystem and play an important role in maintaining a healthy natural balance. As wildlife enthusiasts, we should strive to appreciate and respect these magnificent creatures and their natural behaviors, even when they may seem unexpected or unsettling.

The Video

Bald Eagle Swoops Down and Snatches Small Dog

Now, let’s witness this remarkable footage!

Hunting Tactics of the Bald Eagle


As a wildlife enthusiast, one of the most fascinating things I have learned about is the hunting tactics of the bald eagle. These majestic birds are skilled hunters and use various techniques to catch their prey.

Bald eagles primarily feed on fish, and one of their most well-known hunting tactics is the swoop and snatch. When hunting in open water, bald eagles will soar above and use their keen eyesight to spot fish swimming near the surface. They will then swoop down, using their powerful talons to grab the fish out of the water before flying away.

Another hunting tactic of bald eagles is perching and waiting. Bald eagles will perch high up in a tree or on a cliff and patiently wait for their prey to come into view. They will then quickly fly down and use their sharp talons to grab the prey.

Bald eagles also use a technique known as scavenging. They often feed on carrion, or the remains of dead animals, and steal food from other birds and animals.

In addition to their impressive hunting skills, bald eagles are known for adapting to their surroundings. They will often change their hunting techniques based on the environment and the type of prey they are after.

As a wildlife enthusiast, observing the hunting tactics of bald eagles is truly a remarkable experience. It is a testament to these magnificent birds’ incredible power, grace, and intelligence.

How to Protect Your Pet from Eagles

Bald Eagle Swoops Down and Snatches Small Dog

Here’s a checklist of how to protect your pets from eagles.

  • Keep your pets indoors or supervised when outside. One of the easiest ways to protect your pets from eagles is to keep them indoors. 
  • Avoid leaving pet food outside. Eagles are opportunistic feeders and may be attracted to the smell of pet food left outside. Avoid leaving pet food outside to prevent eagles from being drawn to your property.
  • Install bird netting. If you have an outdoor space where your pets like to play, consider installing bird netting to keep eagles and other birds of prey away. Make sure the netting is secure and covers the entire area where your pets will be playing.
  • Use a leash. If you are walking your dog in an area where eagles are known to be present, use a sturdy leash to keep your pet close to you at all times.
  • Keep your yard clear of debris. Eagles may use large debris, such as fallen branches or trash, as perches. Keep your yard clear of debris to prevent eagles from using your yard as a hunting ground.
  • Avoid attracting small prey. Small prey, such as rabbits or rodents, may be tempted by eagles, which can attract eagles to your property. Consider ways to reduce the presence of small prey, such as sealing up holes in fences or walls where they may be nesting.

By following these tips, you can help protect your pets from eagles and other birds of prey. Eagles are a vital part of the ecosystem, so finding ways to coexist peacefully is essential.

Let’s Not Make the Same Mistake as Sandra Bullocks

YouTube video

Watching Sandra Bullock use a tiny dog as eagle bait in ‘The Proposal’ might seem like a good idea.

But let’s be real – that’s not how you protect your pets from eagles.

Leave the Hollywood stunts to the professionals and follow some real-world advice instead.

The Bottomline

In conclusion, the story of the bald eagle swooping down and picking up a small dog may seem terrifying at first. But it’s important to remember that eagles are simply following their instincts. 

As wildlife enthusiasts, we can appreciate and respect these incredible birds’ power, grace, and adaptability in the wild. While protecting our pets from eagles is essential, we can also learn to coexist with them peacefully, knowing that they play a vital role in maintaining a healthy balance in nature. 

The event of the eagle picking up the dog is a reminder of the awe-inspiring power of these magnificent creatures.It’s a story that will continue to captivate and amaze wildlife enthusiasts for years to come.

Thank you for following along with this article! 

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