Maine Musher, 17, shoots a moose that attacked his sled dogs

Caleb Hayes is much more of a man than I am, even at 17.

I read Caleb’s story in the NDB, and it’s amazing. He’s badass enough as a musher already. I can barely control my own dog, let alone a whole team of dogs. He’s been training hard for a big race ahead, but even all of that barely begins to describe this tough kid.

Earlier this week, he was training his dogs and found himself in a situation no one would ever want to be in… He came face to face with a big cow moose, who was not happy at all . The cow was angry and scared and attacked the dogs in the kennel on the Hayes family property.

The angry moose is no joke.

I always laugh when I see people on Facebook or Reddit who come from far away, and I always ask where they can go to see a moose. We locals know it’s a bad plan to go looking for moose when you’re not hunting them. They’re unpredictable, and frankly, they’re huge. No one should mess with a potentially angry giant, right?

Caleb and his father did no such thing. His father saw the moose for the first time on their property, and he was attacking other dogs and puppies and ransacking the kennel. All attempts to scare the moose with the sled team and a snowmobile failed. It was only a last resort to put down the animal, because it would not stop its attack.

Caleb, 17, is the one who pulled the trigger to save his team.

Caleb’s father sent him a gun to deal with the moose, and Caleb’s first hit of 30.06 sent the gun back in his face, causing him to bleed. But he fired a second shot and shot the cow. The game warden was called and the warden officially put the poor cow out of her misery.

Neither father nor son were happy for it to happen but there was no other option, which was argued by the keepers after being contacted by the Hayes. In the end, the keepers gave them the moose, and the father and son dressed the moose.

It’s a completely crazy story. And all the time I was reading about it, all I could think about was how ridiculously not tough I am. I’m just a sweet, lazy DJ who talks loud all day. But good for Caleb, and for his father too, for keeping a level head and doing what they had to do to protect themselves and their dogs.

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