Chance, Smithshire, IL

Hi! I’m Chance. I was found on October 30th, 2012, at a busy Houston gas station. I was trying to drink some water from an old rusted oil-laced bowl.

The first thing you’ll notice about me is my face. It looked like I was shot in the face; my snout had been partially ripped off. The incredible volunteers at The Forgotten Dogs of the Fifth Ward found me that day by accident. They were out searching for another dog when they ran into me. They gave me some kibbles to eat and seeing my injuries — how it was full of infection — they knew they could not leave me.

My rescuers brought me to the vet, Wags 2 Whiskers Veterinary Hospital. The vet took a good look at me and noticed that on top of my ripped snout, I also have broken teeth and my canine was split in half, which may need to be extracted. My rescuers think I was a bait dog and was probably shot due to poor performance. You see, I am not a fighter so whoever thought it was a good idea to fight me might be disappointed and did that to me.

They gave me a name: Joel. They also gave me a yellow ducky stuffed animal, my first toy. And I knew then I was safe.

The staff at the hospital took a very good care of me. I was getting daily soak and medication to reduce the swelling from infection and abscesses. Slowly and surely I healed, and I learned that not all humans are cruel.

After two weeks, my face was finally healed enough for the vet to perform a super-clean on it as well as my neuter surgery. And my rescuers started looking for a long term foster, or better, a forever home for me.

Far away from Texas, a man who was looking for a dog at the local pound in Illinois was shown a picture of me. He just knew I was the dog he wanted. And that’s all it took.

A plan was made and money was raised to get me to Illinois. A collaborated effort with Knox County Humane Society (PAWC) in Galesberg, IL, its Adoptios Coordinator, Liz Ellis, and some very awesome Facebook friends made this happen.

On December 17, 2012, I went on a transport caravan to my forever home! My new family couldn’t wait to see me. I arrived the next day and guess what, I saw SNOW!!!

My family gave me a new name: Chance. I like that. And slowly, I healed and learned to adjust to being a cherished family member.

My nightmares become less and less. Some of my dreams were horrific for my parents to hear. They’d hear me scream for my life while in a dead sleep and it just broke their hearts. My dad says there is no getting used to it, but just let them become less and less until they’re a faded memory.

My dad remembers the first time he saw me smile and he told me it’s something he will never forget.

He says I’m not even the same dog I was when I first joined the family. I have my quirks, I like to go outside, lay in the pasture, play with toys, and I’m comfortable with my dad. I no longer ducks and runs in to the house when he throws a toy or a ball to play. I now know he’s playing with me so I get excited. And I always brings the toy back, even if it’s just to lay and chew on it. 🙂

I want to share my story to create awareness of animal abuse. I want to teach compassion to the next generation so other dogs don’t have to go through what I went through. I participated in a DARE project with Knox County Humane Society where I met some 5th graders at the school along with another pitbull who only has 3 legs. Her name is Diva and I really like her!

And then, one day in July, my dad saw a photo of this pit bull in Texas. Her name was Darla and she was such a sad looking girl, a stray in bad condition just like I was. She had about 2 months of medical issues to deal with and the good folks at St. Francis’ Angels were taking real good care of her.

My dad told me that he couldn’t explain the magnetism. It was the same feeling he had when he first saw my picture. He just knew he had to help her and that we would be great for each other.

So on October 19, 2013, I welcomed my sister. My dad gave her a new name too. She’s now Lucy and we are getting along great!

Right away, I showed her the yard and we proceeded to lick and kiss each other. Lucy is learning to live with a family and I’m showing her the ropes. We play and lay on the couch, go outside together…We even unstuffed the dog bed together! 🙂 I just love her to pieces! You can follow our adventure on my Facebook page: Meet Chance.

Thank you for reading my story!

~ Chance

Parents: Frank & Lynn