Unfortunately, most pets who arrive at the shelter don’t have many happy stories or tales to tell. The same can be said for the young pit bull Phoenix, who was absolutely terrified of everyone and everything when the shelter crew first met him.
Phoenix was found tied up against a tree, with blisters and wounds everywhere.
In fact, his condition was so severe that first responders thought Phoenix wouldn’t have a life worth living anymore. He was then placed on a euthanasia list, but luckily, it didn’t have to come that far.
A local rescue group, Litters ‘n Critters Rescue Society from Halifax, Nova Scotia, decided that they would do everything in their power to give Phoenix a second chance. A fighting chance – because that’s the least this poor pup deserved. Even though they were very determined, they were also very realistic about his chances.
“He was in really, really bad shape,” founder of the rescue organization Shelley Cunningham said to The Dodo. “He was very withdrawn and sad.”
The rescue group then brought Phoenix to a veterinarian, and he was deemed well enough to move in with a foster family. Lori Teale and her husband were more than happy to take Phoenix in until he was ready to be put up for adoption, and they were already familiar with the good work that this rescue organization does.
Earlier, the couple adopted pup Echo from the Litters ‘n Critters, and they figured that Echo could use a playing buddy for a while.
Phoenix was extremely scared of his new environment, probably because of the things he’s already been through with his previous owner.
The poor pup was afraid of almost everything, such as passing animals or sudden movements.
“He was terrified of everything when we first brought him home,” Lori recalls. “Loud noises would cause him to shake uncontrollably, or he would shut down completely. Even the smallest things would scare him — curtains moving, a cat passing him or something he didn’t notice was suddenly in view. Phoenix was terrified of sudden movements or if you raise your hands with him near or even slightly raised your voice. He would shut down immediately and pancake to the floor.”
However, Phoenix quickly became better thanks to his new friend Echo.
It turns out that the duo of Echo and Phoenix was a match made in heaven. These two furry friends got along so well that Phoenix’s fear started to fade away. When Lori and her spouse noticed their special bond, they decided to adopt Phoenix as well and make it permanent.
“The initial meeting could not have gone any better,” Lori told. “Within the first 24 hours, they were following each other and we knew we couldn’t separate them.”
Slowly, but surely, Phoenix started to have a positive look at things again. He was more energetic, seemed to enjoy the small things much more and was always excited to hang around with Echo.
“I believe it was the confidence of Echo that really helped him settle down and get comfortable,” Lori told. “I give her all the credit, honestly.”
The difference between Phoenix at the shelter and Phoenix now couldn’t be any bigger.
No longer is Phoenix that scared pup, who doesn’t want to come near humans, but he’s just an affectionate four-footer who enjoys all of the attention he receives. Just like most other pups, he also likes to snuggle with his human friends too!
That’s definitely something that Lori and her husband were a bit afraid of at first because they were worried that Phoenix wouldn’t bond with either of them. Luckily, those concerns weren’t valid and Phoenix is an integral and unmissable part of the family.
“I will never regret adopting him,” she concluded. “He’s made our home feel complete and brought so much laughter into our house.”
It’s amazing what a bit of tender loving care can do!
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