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DES MOINES, Iowa (KDKA) — A 2-year-old German Shepherd is being called a “hero dog” after he was beaten and shot when burglars broke into a Des Moines home Wednesday.

KIRO reports that a 16-year-old boy was home with his dog, Rex, when two burglars broke into his home. The teen hid in a closet, bringing Rex with him, but Rex then ran downstairs.

The burglars beat the dog until he was bloody, and Rex ran back upstairs to where the teenager was hiding.

The teen had called 911 and was on the phone when the burglars came into the bedroom where he was hiding.

A family member writes that Rex “threw himself” at the burglars, who shot the dog at least three times. The burglars ran away when they heard sirens outside.

KIRO says Rex was taken to an animal hospital then transferred to an emergency veterinary and specialty animal hospital.

A family member started a GoFundMe page to help pay for Rex’s veterinary expenses — including scans, x-rays and surgery. They hoped to raise $10,000, but they had received almost triple that amount after just one day.

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