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This simple move likely saved Florida man’s life after gator bite

After 60 stiches, 61-year-old ‘thankful’ he survived

A Florida man’s quick actions saved his life.

Mark Johnson is now recovering after he was bitten on the leg by an 8-foot alligator over the weekend.

“When you’re around water, watch your surroundings,” Johnson said.

Johnson recounted the frightening moments being grabbed by a gator while walking his dog, Rex, behind his home in Port Saint Lucie.

Johnson was near the bank of this canal Sunday morning as he yelled for Rex to run.

“I look and the gator is bee-lining,” Johnson said. “This gator was coming in fast. He was aggressive.”

According to Johnson, his foot slipped in the mud giving the alligator a chance to lunge and attack.

After the bite, Johnson used a simple, yet effective move that likely saved his life from the more than 8-foot alligator that was spinning with a tight hold on the 61-year-old’s foot.

“He starts clamping down pretty tight and he started to pull and the next thing I do is instantly, here’s my finger, I poke through the eye poke,” Johnson said. “I had to do something, that’s why I say you have seconds to react.”

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said a contracted nuisance alligator trapper removed the gator and transferred it to an alligator farm.

Johnson now has more than 60 stitches but is thankful he still has his leg and is telling his tale to help warn others.

“Luckily, he opened up. He could have easily started tearing flesh and after the flesh, you’re talking bone and twisting and that’s a leg removal,” Johnson said.