By Katie Brace

TAUNTON (CBS) – The 73-year-old woman who lives at home on Staples Street in East Taunton saves dogs and cats. Thursday night she needed someone to rescue her from an armed intruder.

“Come on Speedo you got company,” said Shirley Rodriquez. Speedo who usually licks guests to death knew the late-night visitor was dangerous.

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“I said, ‘oh is that you, Elois and boom,’” said Rodriquez, who thought the knock was from a neighbor. Instead, a masked man with a gun pushed his way inside her home.

“Yeah, on the way in,” replied Rodriquez motioning to her head. He swung at her head with the gun.

Shirley Rodriquez (WBZ-TV)

“Speedo started barking at him. He was going to shoot him, so I had to calm the dog down. I didn’t want my dog to get shot,” said Rodriquez.

She says she thought she was going to die.

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“He said, ‘gimme your car keys.’ I gave him my keys,” said Rodriquez.

Rodriquez said he waved his gun pushing her into the bathroom. He grabbed her purse and home phone before stealing her car with 400 pounds of cat food in the back.

“She came over and was like, ‘I was just robbed.’ And, I was like, oh my God,” said Peter Bzeula, the victim’s next-door neighbor.

Bzeula wonders if the attack is connected to an incident last week. Rodriquez owns the duplex with one side currently vacant. He says a man broke into the empty side, and he chased him away.

“Everybody knows each other. I don’t know who it could have been, but it’s kind of scary,” said Bzeula.

Officers found Rodriquez’ car two-and-half miles away on the side of the road, but no sign of a suspect.

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“I was lucky. I was lucky,” said Rodriquez. She said at this point she is just tired. Officers returned her car with the 400 pounds of cat food. She now has to go through the process of replacing everything that was in her purse.