When generous animal lovers provided the resources needed to shut down our 10th dog meat farm last year, we found Tom – terrified and cowering under a plastic tub. Our Animal Rescue Team managed to coax him into a crate so that he could be saved and start a new life far away from that awful place.
That new life began at one of our shelter and rescue partners, South Hills Pet Rescue, where he came in biting, scared and completely untrusting of humans. The incredible team at the rescue helped rehabilitate Tom for months until he slowly got used to people and the sights and sounds involved with being a family pet.
Meanwhile, the Herlihy family decided to look for a new companion after the loss of their beloved dog. Their son, Timmy, who is on the autism spectrum, was struck by Tom’s story, and they instantly formed a connection when the family first visited the rescue group. These two were destined to be best friends!
Once in their home, Tom was still very scared at first, spending most of his time sitting in the dining room away from people. Thanks to the family’s patience and care, little by little he started to come out of his shell and move closer until one day he nudged Timmy to pet him. Now, he follows family members from room to room to be near them.
Tom has brought the sunlight back into the family’s lives after the death of their former pet, and the Herlihy family has done the same for Tom. Where it once was quiet and sad, there is laughter, and running and playing outside. Tom dances with joy when his humans enter the room and loves giving Timmy kisses and nuzzles.
Tom’s story shows us that even the most traumatized dogs from dog meat farms can find a happy ending and have the potential to become beloved family pets. Giving dogs a second chance takes time and resources, and we can’t do this lifesaving work without you.