Most dog owners probably wish they could understand what their pup is saying. Who wouldn’t want to know what issues man’s best friend has been mulling over every day? But the truth is that dogs do communicate in their own way, and as one family found out, learning the canine “language” might be more important than you think!

Benjamin and Hope Jordan of South Carolina noticed their dog acting in a very out-of-character way towards the family babysitter. Curious, the family resolved to get to the bottom of his behavior—and they were absolutely stunned by what they found…

Benjamin and Hope Jordan had what seemed like the perfect family, complete with a newborn boy, Finn, and a black Labrador retriever and German Shepherd mix named Killian.

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Benjamin and Hope didn’t need a translator to understand that Killian simply adored baby Finn. But it was only after one recent incident that the parents realized just how lucky they were to have Killian.

The problem started when the family packed their bags for Charleston, South Carolina, in 2012. In a new home, the couple naturally needed to find a babysitter to watch over Finn when they were at work or out together.

Benjamin Jordan / Facebook

Benjamin and Hope did a little research and finally landed on the perfect candidate to watch over their little boy: Alexis Khan. She “was a good fit at the time,” Benjamin said. On any other ordinary day, the story would have ended there.

After the background check came back clean, the Jordans began periodically leaving Finn and Killian with Alexis. Over time, Alexis impressed them with her babysitting skills. But then, the family noticed something strange…

Benjamin Jordan / Facebook

“About five months into her being our babysitter,” Benjamin said, “we started to notice that our dog was very protective of our son when she [Alexis] would come in the door.” Obviously, that didn’t add up.

In every other scenario, Killian was the quintessential good boy: calm, peaceful, and loving. He only barked when someone strange approached the front door. But Benjamin’s description of the pooch’s actions towards Alexis were frightening.

“He was very aggressive towards her,” Benjamin added. “A few times we actually had to physically restrain our dog from going towards her.” This was one of those moments where they would’ve loved to have known exactly what their dog was saying!

Benjamin Jordan / Facebook

Nonetheless, Benjamin and Hope could understand Killian’s message loud and clear: I don’t like this lady – and they needed to figure out why. Of course, they had a few theories…

Happy as they were with Alexis, she had made a few mistakes. Hope recalled one time when Alexis gave Finn adult medication for a toothache instead of the child-friendly, non-medicated tablets.

So, on September 12, 2012, just before leaving Finn with the babysitter, Benjamin and Hope conducted a little test to find out why Killian acted so aggressively towards Alexis—and it was genius.

To capture what she needed, Hope opened up a memo-recording app on her iPhone and placed the device under the couch. For seven-and-a-half hours, it recorded every sound that went on in the living room.

When Benjamin and Hope returned home from work later that day and sent Alexis on her way, they removed their iPhone from under the couch. Then, they played back the recording—and were horrified.

“I wanted to reach through the audio tape, go back in time and just grab him up,” Benjamin said of his son after listening to the recording. The tape “started with cussing,” he said. And it only got worse.

Benjamin continued to describe hearing Finn in the recording: “You hear slap noises and his crying changes from a distress cry to a pain cry.” At one point, he said you could hear the babysitter actually shaking Finn!

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Obviously, Benjamin and Hope were shaken. “To know that for five months I had handed my child to a monster,” Benjamin said. What else had been going on while Finn’s parents were away?

Whatever had been going on, Killian saw all of it, and he’d done his best to let Benjamin and Hope know! “Had our dog not alerted us to the trouble, had my wife’s instincts not said, ‘We need to make something happen,’ Finn could have been killed,” Benjamin said.

A few weeks later, Charleston City Police finally arrested Alexis. She confessed to abusing little Finn and was sentenced to one to three years in prison. But to Benjamin and Hope, the real victory was in another part of Alexis’s sentence…

Benjamin Jordan / Facebook

Authorities placed Alexis on a child abuse registry, barring her from working with children ever again. “That is fantastic news to us,” Benjamin said. “To know that maybe Finn’s ordeal has possibly saved another child’s life in the future.”

Afterwards, local news media recognized Killian as a hero. The pup even made some celebrity appearances, basking in his newfound status! He certainly deserved the praise after saving baby Finn from further abuse and possible psychological damage.

Klaus Jensen / Flickr

Watch the video of this story below. Listening to the Jordans, you can really hear how appreciative they were of their sweet dog, Killian. He really saved the day, didn’t he? What a good boy!

The family reported that Finn suffered no apparent long-term effects. It’s a perfect example of why listening to your intuition—and your dog’s—might be more important than you think!

Share this cautionary tale with your friends who love animals!