In January 2016, California-based rescue group Hope for Paws received a call about a homeless street dog.
The person who called said the dog had spent his whole life on the streets, and he was very nervous around people. Two rescuers, Eldad Hagar and Lisa Chiarelli, headed off to the area where the dog had been spotted, hoping they could save him.
Hagar and Chiarelli found the dog hiding underneath a car. They carefully approached him, trying not to spook him. But the second they got close to him, he ran.
Chiarelli and Hagar chased the pup down the street. Thankfully, the dog ran onto a driveway that had a gate, and so Chiarelli and Hagar were able to close the gate behind them, penning the dog in. They placed a leash around the neck, trying to calm down the scared pup.
After a few minutes, the dog seemed to realize the rescuers wanted to help him, and he relaxed. He laid still and let Hagar and Chiarelli pet him. Hagar was shocked to see how matted the dog was.
“This is one of the worst mattings I’ve ever seen in my life,” Hagar said.
Once the pup was calm enough, Hagar and Chiarelli brought him into their car, where he laid down in the backseat. They decided to name him Benji.
“You ready for a better life? Chiarelli asked him as the pup looked up at her with loving eyes. “You precious boy.”
Hagar and Chiarelli brought Benji to Hope for Paws’ rescue center, and they immediately began shaving him. The results were stunning—he looked like a whole new dog!
Benji’s physical transformation was complete, but now the rescuers had to work on healing his soul. During his first ten days in the rescue center, Benji didn’t interact with the rescuers. But then, two of the rescue’s other dogs, Lola and Frankie, helped Benji come out of his shell. He started playing with them and taking naps with them. Slowly but surely, Benji became a cheerful, happy pup.
Benji stayed at Hope for Paws for a few months for rehabilitation. During this time, his fur grew back, and he soon had a beautiful coat of curly white fur. His fur would never be matted again—he had people to care for him and groom him now.
When Benji was ready, Hope for Paws began looking for his perfect forever home.
Luckily, it didn’t take too long for the organization to find the perfect family for Benji. This family understood Benji’s unique needs, and they had a ton of patience with him. Hope for Paws knew this family would provide Benji with a loving, wonderful home.
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Benji’s first years of life were rough, but thanks to a kind group of rescuers, this sweet pup has transformed into a whole new dog. If you’d like to learn more about Benji, check out the video below!
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Source: Hope for Paws