When the stray little dog was found homeless in a bed of thick bushes, he was so shy his rescuers spent an hour trying to coax him out of hiding. And upon seeing his broken demeanor, it may have been hard to imagine that the dog would ever know happiness again. But, it seems, nothing could crush the pup’s amazing spirit.
At the end of 2016 the Hope For Paws animal rescue team had learned of a dog that was in desperate need of help. Specifically, the organization had received a tip-off about a poor pooch that had been living in some bushes by the side of a busy freeway. And as a result, a rescue team was sent to investigate.
From what the charity had heard, the desperate doggy had been living there for at least a month. Throughout that time, meanwhile, kind strangers had tried to provide the canine with food and assistance. However, the animal was simply too far in the thick foliage for anyone to reach.
So when rescuers Lisa Arturo and JoAnn Wiltz arrived on the scene, they were keen to coax the creature out of its makeshift den. In video footage of the rescue attempt, for example, one of the women is heard trying to convince the dog that it is safe to emerge. Then, after a while, the two caught their first glimpse of him through the thick vegetation.
Unfortunately, the brush was so great that they were unable to grab the dog. Not to be deterred, though, the two ladies began to break through the thick branches in an attempt to free the pup. And, after a lot of hard work, the rescuers finally got close enough to grab him.
Before attempting to move the sweet animal, however, Arturo and Wiltz worked to win his trust with some food. They also treated him to a reassuring stroke on the head, which the bulldog/pit bull mix seemed to enjoy. Indeed, as they gently massaged the dog, he simply closed his eyes and relaxed.
Still, it wasn’t going to be that easy to lure the furbaby out: the dog was clearly mistrustful of humans and, as a result, seemed unwilling to go with the Hope For Paws volunteers. But, after much perseverance and lots of treats, Arturo and Wiltz were finally able to get a leash on him.
The two women then carried the dog to safety. After living alone for so long, and apparently hiding most of that time in the bushes, it seemed the gentle creature was even too weak to walk. However, he was able to muster up some energy to show his saviors just how grateful he was for their kindness.
In fact, the pooch seemed to relax as soon as he left the bushes. From the moment he emerged from his bristly prison, for example, he started merrily wagging his tail. So elated was he, moreover, that his little bottom wiggled furiously from side to side in sheer delight.
Perhaps inspired by the vine-covered patch where they found the dog, Arturo and Wiltz named him Tarzan. And then, as the animal was still too weak in the knees to walk, the rescuers carried Tarzan to their nearby car. Finally, they rushed him to an animal hospital where he could be thoroughly checked.
It’s unknown exactly what had happened to Tarzan in the past, but it was certain that he’d not seen human love for a long time. Thankfully, at the hospital it seemed as if he was keen to accept the new-found attention bestowed upon him. Indeed, although no one can be sure just what the dog was thinking, it looked like he’d finally found some peace.
Still, as a precaution the vets had Tarzan stay at the animal hospital for some time in order to make sure he had recovered. He was also neutered during his stay, as is usually standard procedure for rescued strays. Then, once he was fit, the dog was able to go to a loving foster home arranged by Los Angeles’ Road Dogs & Rescue.
The organization specializes in helping bulldog breeds, which often require more care than owners are prepared to give. Indeed, as the Road Dogs & Rescue website has explained, “many [bulldogs] wind up in the shelters or unwanted because people do not realize how expensive they can be to maintain. Eye issues, skin issues, joint issues – you name it, bulldogs get it.”
Meanwhile, while Tarzan seems comfortable at his foster home, the organization is currently hard at work trying to find the pup a permanent place to live. Advertising him to potential owners on its Facebook page, one post showed a picture with the caption, “Meet Tarzan!”
“This sweet low-rider boy was rescued from the streets by Hope For Paws,” the statement continued. “Now we need to find him a fantastic foster/forever home! Just one year old, he loves people and [is] good with other dogs,” it concluded.
That message was posted in October 2016; two months later, however, Tarzan was still without a home. So, to drum up some interest in his story, Hope For Paws posted a video documenting his epic rescue.
And the clip certainly captured some attention. Within days of being posted on YouTube, in fact, the footage had received over 200,000 views. And it seems that some people fell instantly in love with Tarzan’s permanently wagging tail, grinning face and bubbly demeanor.
“It’s great to see the transformation from a defeated, worn-out dog to a happy, spunky dog,” one moved viewer commented. Meanwhile, another added, “I cried so hard at the end seeing how happy he was, so lovely.”
And certainly many people seem interested in adopting Tarzan. “Does this fella have a home? Me and my family have wanted a bulldog for years, and we would really like a rescue to show it a second chance at life,” read one kind offer. Another animal lover wrote, “What a beautiful soul, such a sweet gentle boy. This vid makes me want him, and I so do, I would spoil him with love forever.”
So with all the interest surrounding Tarzan, he will hopefully find his forever home soon. Indeed, with any luck, the loving dog could be settling in with his new family just in time for the holidays. One thing’s for sure, though: no matter where he ends up, Tarzan has a lot of joy to give.