This guard dog was rescued by firefighters who found him chained to a tree at a homeless camp during a fire in West Palm Beach, two years ago.
It suffered third-degree burns and howled with pain when rescuers rushed him to Jupiter Pet Emergency and Specialty Centre.
“The little guy was burned up pretty good,” Captain Gordon stated. “Even when we grabbed him, he was very distressed. I was concerned whether he would live.”
The dog was given the name ‘Smokey’ by firefighters.
Smokey endured many blood transfusions, medicated baths, painful bandage changes, and trips to a hyperbaric chamber over the course of his recovery. Throughout it all, Smokey still managed to learn to love and trust humans again.
Dr. Federico Latimer was the primary veterinarian in charge of Smokey’s care, so naturally, the two formed a close bond as the doctor worked day in, day out to return Smokey to wellness.
Once Smokey was finally well enough to leave the hospital, it was Captain Gordon who stepped up to foster the dog until a forever home could be found. The firefighter was so impressed with how much the little dog had overcome that he simply couldn’t stand by and watch him languish in a shelter for one more day.
When Smokey was due to return to JPESC for a check-up, you’d think he was returning to a beloved childhood home instead of the vet’s office! In a video shared by JPESC, the dog has the most heartwarming reaction to seeing the people who worked so hard to teach him that not all humans are bad.
The second he saw his old friend and savior he launched into the vet’s arms, licking his face and showering him with affection. He even knocks the doctor down onto the floor in his excitement, but Dr. Latimer doesn’t mind a bit. This affection goes both ways.