Hi! I’m Smokey The Pit Bull!
I was 3 months old when Animal Control found me as a stray in July 2009 in Bakersfield, CA. It was very hot out there (most days were at least 110 degrees) and I was in a lot of pain. I was abused and dumped, left alone in pain and agony for at least a few days before they found me.
I had acid burns all over me. One burn was about five inches wide from my neck all the way down my back. There were some splashes on the top of my head and hind end that weren’t that deep and there were more splashes on my back legs. The big one on the back of my head and neck was very deep, almost down to the bone.
Even though I was in a lot of pain, I wagged my tail a lot when people talked to me. Not that it mattered because this place is a high-kill shelter and I was set to die on August 1st.
But that’s not meant to be the end of me.
A man received a plea from Kern County Animal Control (KCAC), came to the shelter on July 31st — just hours before my time was up — and saved me!
I stayed in Bakersfield until August 5th because the man who would be my Daddy wanted to be sure he was stable enough to travel to his place. The vet at KCAC saw me a couple of times for bandage changes, medications and ointments, then my dad brought me home to San Diego and immediately took me into the hospital there to be treated by the nice Dr. Redfield.
The staff at the hospital told me I’m a true sweetheart and I just love people! I love to go up to everyone I meet and will lean into them and immediately roll over for a belly rub. The techs and doctors would take me out, let me with them in the treatment area and I would just hang out with them.
Dr. Redfield said my burns were deliberate because of the pattern and definitely caused by chemical/acid — you judge for yourself by the photos. I was in medical boarding until August 22nd before I finally got to go home to my Daddy.
I went through nearly a year of treatment — daily bandage changes and then surgery to be able to close up the remaining wounds so that it would heal quicker. My dad has been rescuing and rehabbing abused dogs for 20 years — since his first pit bull — so he was not intimidated at all. And I get to wear some stylin’ shirts during this period which has now become my signature trademark.
Now I’m two and half years old. My dad says I’m a well-adjusted, well-balanced and very loving dog. I’ve completed my obedience training and a pre-therapy training program in San Diego so I can get my CGC & Therapy Certification. I’ve made visits to hospice homes, assisted living facilities and numerous events.
I harbor no grudges towards humans — I absolutely love everyone & everything, all people and animals no matter what size, shape or type! People were a little intimidated by me at first, but after I made myself comfortable, smiling and rolling over for belly rubs, people would just smile and laugh! I would then lay my head on their laps and let them love me. Life doesn’t get better than that! Making people smile and getting love back!
My dad says I changed the minds of many people that otherwise stereotype pit bulls or are afraid them with my sweet & calming demeanor. I also helped my dad rehabilitate other pit bulls he rescued who have been abused. As an advocate for pit bulls, my dad has rescued, rehabbed and rehomed a lot of dogs in need, but there are six that he had rescued and kept forever because four of us had high medical and were not adoptable.
One of them is Dexter, the big boy with a big smile in the photo with me. Dexter was a death row shelter dog who my Daddy saved. He had been severely abused, neglected and used as a bait dog. Dexter was afraid of everything, including people, toys and loud sounds. I helped him get better and now he is no longer that cowering dog that is afraid of toys. You can find him & me often playing with toys together and being boys!
We moved to San Antonio, TX, last year and continue our rescue work. My dad named his rescue after me, In Smokey We Trust, and our new goal is to not only rescue but also to unchain dogs and build fences, replace water bowls, food dishes, vet care for the dogs that need care/treatment. I continue to do my therapy work, being an ambassador for my breed everywhere and meeting lots of adoring fans, like the Mayor of San Antonio, Julian Castro.
Follow our adventure on my Facebook page, Smokey The Pit Bull, where I continue to melt the hearts and change the minds of many people. You can also watch my videos on YouTube. It’s just full of adventures of me and my other fur-siblings, like my best friend Archie the deaf boxer (in the Christmas photo) who Daddy saved from Baldwin Shelter’s death row.
I was rescued and now have my forever home with my Daddy. And I will continue to help people as well as help rehabilitate other dogs.
Thanks for reading my story!
p.s. I was featured in American Dog Magazine‘s Winter 2011 issue! And my dad was also honored by the magazine; he received their 1st Humanitarian Award for Individual Saving/Adopting Dogs! Way to go, Dad!