I found him on a dog rescue page on FB. At the time, I was grieving the loss of my canine companion that had been killed by an unruly dog that broke free of inadequate restraints. I was in no hurry for another dog but this dog’s story touched my heart with compassion and challenge. I drove 1200 miles to save this boy. During the first day of travel toward home, I was wondering what I had gotten myself into. I had just adopted a dog that I could not board nor trust around a dog walker if we had to leave him at home for any length of time. He has to wear a muzzle when visiting the vet. When I left him at the vet for neutering, I implored them not to take off his muzzle unless he was sedated. I took the muzzle off a couple of hours into our travel, after picking him up at the shelter. I received a warning growl as thanks. I had alcohol, peroxide and bandages in the car to treat myself for bites if needed. By the third day, when we got home, this dog was trusting me enough to sit in my lap while I was in my recliner.
It took another two or three days for him to trust my wife. Now, whenever either of has to leave him for a time, he is the cutest happy dancer when we come back home. On hind legs he dances and spins. Then, still on hind legs, he moves up close for hugs and kisses. He has been with us for twelve weeks now. I have never doubted that any of our past canines loved us dearly but this boy is the most demonstrative in his affection of any dog that we have ever had. That is a huge reward for us. Little by little, I am calming his fears around noises and strangers but I doubt that he can ever be fully trusted around strangers without a muzzle. We do not care because the joy that he brings us is well beyond the inconvenience of managing his negative behavior. His name, for obvious reasons, was Batman when we adopted him. I renamed him Chance which is short for Batman’s Last Chance. I am pretty certain that we were his last chance to avoid euthanasia. The shelter vet had even advised putting him down. One of the shelter staff members, who had twice suffered his wrath, referred to him as The Ripper.