FurEver Animal Rescue: All-Star Dog Rescue Celebration Grant

What was the money or product used for?

Grants funds were used to pay for spay/neuter, medical care, crates, training aids, special dietary needs, leashes, collars, toys and training fees.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Because pit bulls have medical issues that are more often than not a long-term issue to correct, the high cost of medical bills that are usually associated with them has limited our intakes. Also, training has not been an option because of the cost. This grant allowed us to customize a complete program for each pitty, as well as take medically needy pits that we otherwise would not have been able to take. Because of your generous grant, our pits received the medical care they needed to resolve their health issues and completed a training program that made them more adoptable.

How many pets did this grant help?

Your grant has changed the lives of seven pit bulls. Four have completed our program successfully and found new homes, and three are still in our program resolving medical issues before moving on.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Mugsley was used as a bait dog. The only life he knew was one of pain and terror. He was never treated for any of his wounds, the chronic bilateral ear infections, or the demodectic mange that covered his body, and it goes without saying that he wasn’t neutered. When he came to us, most of his fur was gone. He had only elephant-like hide with oozing sores all over his body. His face had an open, infected gash that started by his mouth and went up around his right eye. He could barely walk because of the swelling in his feet from the infected wounds on his legs and between his toes. He showed no emotions. He did not bark, whine, wag his tail or growl. It was so sad to see the blankness in his eyes. We know we could heal the physical wounds, but could we repair the emotional damage that had been done?

Mugsley endured months of intense medical care, including a neuter, and with each passing day his sweet, loving personality became more and more apparent. It was as if he knew his previous life was a closed chapter and he had the ability to write new pages to his story. Everything was a new adventure for him. Previously knowing nothing except being attacked, he didn’t know what to do with toys or other dogs other than sit submissively and do nothing. It took a great deal of time and patience before he realized that there can be joy in the companionship of another dog. And when he finally realized what a toy was and how much fun it can be, we were over the moon to see the excitement in his face.

With Mugsley’s medical issues behind him and his successful journey thus far to becoming a real fur kid, it was time to write a new chapter in his book. We contacted the trainer and explained his past. She felt that in-house, one-to-one training would be the best place for him to start. Mugsley was eager to please and caught on quickly — so quickly that she also put him in training in a group situation to help with socialization skills. Mugsley loved going to training and it showed in his performance. We received a call from the trainer suggesting that he continue his work, and that he would be a great candidate for getting his Canine Good Citizen certification. With tears of joy, we proudly watched Mugsley receive his Canine Good Citizen certificate.

With a whole new outlook on life, it was time to find a forever family that would shower Mugsley with love every day and see him as a cherished member of the family. Mugsley shined like a star at adoptions and his story saddened people, but there was always that hint of concern about his previous skin issues and whether his past would creep back in at a later date and somehow change him. After attending numerous adoption events, he won the heart of a young girl. She told us that she was going home to talk with her family and would be back. Although there was sincerity and determination in her voice, the “I will be back” story is heard so often in the rescue world that you smile politely but don’t hold your breath.

It was as if Mugsley knew in his heart she was the one chosen for him, and from that moment forward it was as if his world collapsed when she left. He remained sweet and friendly, but the spark was gone. Two weeks went by and not a word. We were at an adoption event when Mugsley jumped up in his crate, started wagging his tail and whining. When we looked up, here she was with her family and Mugsley knew she was there for him. She smiled and said, “We are here to take Mugsley home!” We thought he was going to dislocate his hips, he was wagging his tail so fast.

The beginning of Mugsley’s life was horrific, but he has finally gotten a happy ending with a family who will love and cherish him. His success and the successes of others like him are made possible by the wonderful support of our community and through grants such as the one from the Petfinder Foundation and All-Star Rescue Dog Celebration. Through this generous grant, we were able to offer Mugsley the best medical care possible, see him through the long recovery and provide him with the skills to grow into a valuable member of someone’s family. Thank you for making miracles happen.

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