A beloved dog was killed trying to protect his family after a gunman opened fire during a birthday party in Houston.

The Martinez family was hosting a birthday party when, according to police, a friend of the children arrived with a gun, the Houston Chronicle reported Friday. 

An argument broke out, and the gunman opened fire, injuring Laura Martinez and her two children.


"I went to go turn to run and I just feel instant pressure in my lower back. Put my hand back there and I realize there was blood all over my hands," Martinez’s daughter, Valori Pace, told KPRC Click2Houston.

That’s when the family dog, Zero, reportedly jumped on the suspect and bit him.

Zero was shot and fell back for a moment before jumping on the suspect again, the family described.

"I honestly believe if Zero had not kept jumping on him, he would’ve been able to get shots higher than our legs," Martinez told the outlet. 

Zero was euthanized after a veterinarian said he couldn't be saved, according to a GoFundMe set up by the family.

The family said they had wanted to confront the suspect, whom they believed was involved in a recent burglary.

Police are still searching for the suspect for questioning.

"This is not something we would ever think was going to happen," Martinez said.