Rescued Animals Who Found Happy Homes (And Jobs!)

You’ve heard many of the stories, and seen the pictures. Animals are abandoned and abused. They are the target of all sorts of crazy and tragic experiences. Even with the harsh realities of their existences, it’s important to remember that the lives of these critters can be turned around.

You’ll love to hear the stories of those animals when they are discovered and given a cute purpose in life, even a job where they can make us all realize how important it is save the abandoned and abused creatures. Each of us has the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of those critters.

Abandoned Baby Squirrel Becomes Film Celebrity

Abandoned Baby Squirrel Becomes Film Celebrity

Rob, a Sri Lankan palm squirrel, was abandoned by its mother, though it’s not clear why. What is clear is that the little guy was nearly dead by the time Paul Williams, a filmmaker working with BBC Wildlife, found him. He looked dead, only registering life by a little twitch, barely breathing as Williams walked by.

He wrapped up the baby and then left the critter in a tree nearby. When he returned to check on Rob, he was still alone (his mother hadn’t come to rescue him). Then, Williams used thermal imagining to look for a nest, without success. Rob eventually became part of the film crew, as he was constantly being fed and cared for by Williams and the rest of the group.

Rescued Pit Bull Becomes Firehouse Dog

Rescued Pit Bull Becomes Firehouse Dog

Ashley is a pit bull dog that was left out in the cold; she was hungry and left to die. Erica Mahnken and Michael Favor found the skin-and-bones dog in an empty house, and then took him over to a New York firehouse, Fort Pitt station, where the firefighters had planned to keep her until a good home was found.

Ashley quickly stole everyone’s hearts, though, and she also put on weight and became the perfect firehouse mascot. So the Fort Pitt firefighters decided to keep her. She’s such an integral part of the fire crew that she even has her own seat on the firetruck.

Stray Dog Becomes Running Partner

Stray Dog Becomes Running Partner

Dion Leonard ran a marathon in China, but he wasn’t alone. A little dog named Gobi joined him on the 155-mile trek. With a friend and running partner like that, how could you possibly leave him behind? Well, Leonard flew back to the Scotland, and began the long and cumbersome process of adopting Gobi. While the process was underway, though, Gobi disappeared.

It’s not uncommon for a dog to disappear, but what is probably quite rare are the lengths that his person was willing to go to in order to rescue him. Undeterred by the daunting task, Leonard tried to be there for Gobi just as the little dog had been there for him on the long marathon run. He flew back to China and pulled out all the stops to find Gobi. He distributed flyers, and a local reported a sighting. Leonard said, “When we got there, I walked through the door and she came running towards me and ran around my legs and jumped up on me.” More than just a running partner, the duo are family. This time, Leonard didn’t leave China until he could take Gobi with him.

Stray Cat Becomes SWAT Mascot

Stray Cat Becomes SWAT Mascot

It’s not every day Boston Police Department’s SWAT team gets a mascot, particularly not one that just wandered in from the street. But in this case, they got lucky and into their lives came a stray calico cat. She wandered into HQ one day and, really, just never left. So, she became SWAT Cat, their mascot, but they could never though she seemed to love their company, she just didn’t want to stay indoors. The department spokesperson said, “[We] have tried… to convince her to come in from the elements but she is set in her ways”

Since they couldn’t bring SWAT Cat in from the cold, Officer Jamie Pietrosk stayed late after his shifts and made her a warm condo cathouse, complete with a large deck, and “panoramic city views.” Although she’d refused to be enticed into the station, she appeared to love her new digs.

Abandoned Puppy Becomes Best Friend

Abandoned Puppy Becomes Best Friend

Vacktor was one of four puppies found abandoned in an empty backyard with their mother. While they were all alive, the man who discovered them, Tóth Tamás found that they were all weak, with little food or water. The mother and puppies were all in pretty bad shape.

While he found homes for the other dogs, he kept Vacktor, and that little pup has made himself quite at home. As he’s explained, “She is now a teenage food waste grinder with a constantly innocent gaze, acting like everything in this world exists just to please her.” From all accounts, that little dog has quite a personality.

Rescued Kittens Become World-Class Adventurers

Rescued Kittens Become World-Class Adventurers

Bolt and Keel were two cats that were abandoned in a local park and discovered in a bush behind a trash receptacle. When they found the cats, they had every intention to take them to the local shelter, but it was too late after work, and they had plans for the weekend.

So, the brothers, Bolt and Keel, quickly became world-class adventurers, in ways you’d likely not have expected. While cats are notoriously not fond of water, this duo quickly embraced a life that includes kayaks, sailboats, and canoes, along with all the other outdoor adventures: hiking, camping, and beyond. Just when you may have thought that cats would never learn to be a partner in outdoor adventures, they really surprised everyone, making themselves right at home.

Once-Abandoned Dog Travels to Abandoned Spots

Once-Abandoned Dog Travels to Abandoned Spots

Claire is a 3-year-old Bull Terrier. Despite the fact that she was rescued, she doesn’t know she’s a dog. She thinks she is a captain. Alice van Kempen has taken the critter with her to a myriad of places around the world, including hospitals, churches, farms, houses, prisons, military bases, coal mines, planes, trains, and beyond.

So, through it all, Claire really seems like the perfect personification figure in those old abandoned spots around Europe and beyond. Van Kempen says that the dog gets really excited when it’s time to get to work. She says, “We have traveled extensively through several European countries in search of decayed and abandoned places.

Abandoned Dog Becomes Part Of “I Have a Dream” Organization

Abandoned Dog Becomes Part Of “I Have a Dream” Organization

Smokey was a sweet dog who was left at the Franklin County Dog Shelter & Adoption Center on Valentine’s Day when his people lost their home and could no longer care for him. But, his time at the shelter didn’t go well. The previous owners insisted that he must be adopted with his pet elephant, and really that little stuffed critter was the only thing that appeared to brighten his day. Other than that, he was stressed and super-shy, and there just wasn’t a lot of interest in him as an adoptable pet.

That’s when the I Have A Dream Rescue Organization stepped in. They talked with him and working with him. Melissa Sutherland says, “It is amazing what rescue does for dogs.” From being so sad to such a happy-go-lucky dog, the change really is astounding.

Stray Cat Picks Owner

Stray Cat Picks Owner

Kawasaki Hina was at the local park when a small, and very loud, kitten ran up to him and demanded attention. She wouldn’t leave him alone and followed behind him when he tried to walk back home. So, what choice did Hina really have? He had to carry the little fuzzball home.

So, then, the owner-pet relationship immediately went to the next level. As Hina explains, “She fell asleep immediately back at my house.” And, it became very obvious that the kitten would live there forever. He says, “She is like a family to me. I think she also loves me. We’ll be together forever.”

Dying Shelter Dog Become Miracle Pet

Dying Shelter Dog Become Miracle Pet

You’ve probably read those stories about when a person was given days to live, and they survived 10 or 15 years, but would you really expect such a miracle from a poor, bedraggled chihuahua, who not only is a rescue animal but she’s old, is sick and just has lots of health problems? The staff at Asheville Humane Society could see that Jay-Z’s health was obviously affecting her adopt-ability.

That’s when Heather Hayes, the marketing manager at the shelter, stepped in and stood up for the little pooch, saying, “Let me take her home for a night and if we decide she doesn’t have a quality of life and we have to let her go, I want her to be at a home. At least she’ll feel loved for 24 hours.” More than just that first night, her care and companionship, giving the dog a family, helped her live four more years — all in Heather’s care. But, she learned a lot from that time, “Jay-Z taught me to cherish senior animals, who need love and comfort the most in the final years of their lives. Just like people.”

Abandoned Pup With Broken Back Becomes “Cart Dog”

Abandoned Pup With Broken Back Becomes “Cart Dog”

Imagine seeing a dog on the streets of a foreign country you were visiting. While veterinary care can vary depending on where you find yourself, Nancy Janes discovered a 3-month-old puppy who’d obviously been hit by a bus and was dragging herself around in a heart-breaking, tragic state. Undeterred by the sorry state of the little critter, Nancy smuggled the dog into her local hotel room, got her into a local vet clinic and even refused to give up when the vet told her that the puppy would never walk again.

Nope, Nancy wouldn’t give up. She brought the pup back to the US, took her to the UC Davis Veterinary Hospital, and didn’t even seem discouraged when the prognosis was confirmed. The US vets recommended euthanasia or that she accept the realities of a long-term, permanent care situation and a cart. Nancy chose life and the cart, and she named the pup “Anna Marie.” Nancy also founded the Romania Animal Rescue to help save other dogs (and cats) just like Anna Marie.

Rescue Chicken Learns To Dance

Rescue Chicken Learns To Dance

Ok, you’re probably skeptical about the whole Chicken dancing thing, and rightly so. But even if chickens really can’t dance (or not as well as you’d like), there are reports of a therapy chicken named Darla, who wears a pink tutu.

You won’t be surprised to learn that Erika Proctor is the founder of Green Dogs Unleashed, a rescue group based in Virginia. You may be heartened to learn that it was her son, Finn, who insisted that they bring Darla and two other sickly chicks home with them when they were rescued from an animal fair. He wanted to make sure they knew love, and (unfortunately, two of the chicks didn’t survive). But, Darla lived, and is now she’s a therapy pet, helping kids learn and be more aware.

Abandoned Dog Becomes Car Station Employee

Abandoned Dog Becomes Car Station Employee

It doesn’t take a whole lot of imagination to come up with an idea of what happens when a black lab is abandoned at a gas station. Yes, lots of people come and go, but it’s not really a place you’d expect for charitable travelers to decide they’d love to pick up a big dog and take him home, right?

That’s just what happened with Negão but he was fortunate that the owners of the gas station found him, fell in love with him, and decided to give him a home, make him an employee, even part of their team with an ID tag and everything. As Sabrina Plannerer explains, “Negão waits for people to arrive, and then goes up to say hello, winning them over with his charms. Customers love him. Some people even bring him toys.” There’s one more thing that Negão is doing with his welcoming presence. He’s demonstrating just how wonderful an adoptive pet can be.

Stray Dog Goes Home With Firefighter

Stray Dog Goes Home With Firefighter

Army veteran and firefighter Rob Tackett agreed to pose for the 2017 Charleston Animal Society’s firefighter calendar with a rescue dog, Kimber. As you can see, though, the photo shoot really didn’t go quite as he’d anticipated. Tackett said. “When I first met her she curled up in my arms, it was an instant connection. She felt safe with me.”

It was a perfect connection. Steve Hall, Kimber’s former owner, and elite Marine, hadn’t wanted to give her up, but health issues had made it impossible for him to continue to care for her. But, before giving her up, it was clear that Kimber made a dramatic difference in her former owner’s life, by helping relieve anxiety from PTSD. Now, she did the same for Tackett, and it’s his hope that she will be able to help other veterans.

Vets Wanted To Euthanize Until Lou Stepped In & Proved He Was a Survivor

Vets Wanted To Euthanize Until Lou Stepped In & Proved He Was a Survivor

Nubby was born with no front legs, so his siblings were pushing him out of the way. Vets were concerned and vets even considered euthanizing the pup. So, Lou Robinson, founder of a rescue group (Warriors Educate About Rescue), stepped in and took the pup home.

Robinson says, “Day three came and went, day seven, day 10, day 16 and Nubby thrived. He thrived!” His fight to live was not over after those first tentative days. He developed pneumonia and even had internal issues, including “esophageal abnormality.” But, he’s a Survivor, and he’s already beaten the odds.

Abandoned Blind Pit Bull Becomes Ballerina

Abandoned Blind Pit Bull Becomes Ballerina

Poly is a blind pit-bull dog who was abandoned on a park bench. The Santa Barbara County Animal Services said it was evident that she’d recently given birth to puppies, and that she also suffered from a chronic heart condition and skin issue.

Animal care workers said that she was a sweet dog, and she received the best possible care in the foster home that took her in. In fact, she felt well enough to put on a tutu and play. After the story of her abandonment and health issues first was made public, donors gave more than $15,000. Her family reported: “Even with the heart surgery and medications and high-quality foods, her heart just could not sustain her life any longer. She passed in the arms of the people who loved her most. We are still in tears.”

Elderly Rescue Dog Just Gets Younger With Adventure ‘Bucket List’

Elderly Rescue Dog Just Gets Younger With Adventure ‘Bucket List’

Morgan is a senior Dachshund, who arrived at a shelter after his person passed away. He was 18-years old, so he was considered “unadoptable,” so the shelter called Senior Paws Sanctuary. But Kate Reidy says that Morgan seems to have the “Benjamin Button disease. He just seems to get “more active, livelier and his personality has grown.”

But Reidy didn’t stop there. She saw that Morgan was full of life and she decided to create his very own bucket list. So far, he’s attended a baseball game, gotten his picture taken with Santa, tried a Yoga class, flown on an airplane, and even gone running on a beach. They may seem like little things, but even an old dog wants to experience life, and she’s given that adventure to him.

Rescue Dog Becomes Kid Substitute

Rescue Dog Becomes Kid Substitute

Din was severely injured, and the vet even suggested that she might need to have her right leg amputated due to infection. But, she beat the odds and even were brought home by a young couple who really wanted to help her, though they weren’t sure how their current dog, Lonfah (meaning “love you to the max”) would react.

The couple had been married for 4 years and didn’t have children, so Lonfah was their kid. They took him everywhere with them, dressed him up and really just treated him like “a baby.” She did have some behavioral problems due to initial trust issues, for which they called in a dog trainer, but overall Din appears to have fit right in, though. The two dogs became fast friends and siblings.

Shelter Cat Only Wants To Hold Your Hand

Shelter Cat Only Wants To Hold Your Hand

Jamie is a 13-year-old Burmese cat, who arrived at the RSPCA Australia animal shelter when his person was placed in a nursing home. As you might imagine, his age appeared to be an issue with adoption, but that didn’t stop Sarah Dempsey from adopting Jamie and bringing him home. It was immediately clear that they’d forged a connection. As she says, “I knew he’d rescue me from feeling alone, and I’d do the same for him.” Now, they’re inseparable, and they even sleep together, just holding hands. Dempsey says, ” If I let go he wakes up, meows, and claws my hand back to him,” Dempsey said. “I think we’ve bonded already.”

Strays Become Three Blind Cats

Strays Become Three Blind Cats

You’ve heard the story (and nursery rhyme) for the “Three Blind Mice,” but you’ve probably never heard of the infamous Three Blind Cats. Blue and his sisters, Meadow and Little Willow, were all abandoned in 2014, and it was difficult to place them because of their disability as well as the reality that they could not be separated.

That’s when Catherine Magno stepped in. Their story touched her heart, and she said, “I couldn’t bear the thought of them put in a cage at vet facility indefinitely or even worse.” But, she also said that her new roommates also completely altered her mindset about pets with special needs: “My perception was that it’s going to not only be challenging but will also require a lot of adjustments on my part.” Really that wasn’t so. They were together, happy and healthy. She did learn something else, though too: “Blind pets see through their hearts.”