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Family dog cushions baby's fall in rollover car crash in Grand Junction

Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. Many thanks to Nikita the border collie and to Diane from Black Canyon Animal Sanctuary.
Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. Many thanks to Nikita the border collie and to Diane from Black Canyon Animal Sanctuary.Photo by John Moore/Getty Images

Frankie Hejny and her 19-month-old daughter owe their lives to their two-year-old border collie named Nikita, who last week jumped into the back seat of a car to cushion a baby's body during the impact of a car collision with her own body reports

Hejny lost control of her Jeep Cherokee in Grand Junction, Colo. and plunged down a 63 foot cliff; once on the bottom the vehicle rolled over four times. According to Hejny, her dog was one heck of a hero:

"My daughter was sitting right here and she (Nikita) rolled out of the back, jumped up here and when we were upside down, she ran out; she took a major blow for my daughter."

Nikita then ran away to find help.

Nikita has been credited with saving her family, but then came another cruel twist of fate. Less than one week later, the dog was hit by a car. Black Canyon Animal Sanctuary continues what could have been a more tragic story:

"The office phone just rang. It was an hysterical woman at the other end rambling a story about her daughter and granddaughter being in a rollover accident last Friday and that their dog saved the life of her granddaughter. 15 minutes ago the dog was run over and she said, ....We HAVE to save her life now!!!!!! My daughter has no car to get her to the vet and no money. Can you PLEASE help us?????...."

The rescue responded by calling the local veterinarian and leaving the needed credit card information to treat Nikita.

Days later, Nikita is reported to be on the mend.

Without hesitation, Black Canyon Animal Sanctuary came to the aid of a complete stranger and their dog. For more information how you can help this wonderful organization, please contact

Congratulations to all of the heroes - human and canine.

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