Rescued from a puppy mill, “Smiley,” a dog born without eyes, is living up to his name, inspiring others with his sweet disposition after overcoming a heartbreaking past.
Rescued ten years ago by Ontario dog trainer Joanne George when he was around two-years-old, it wasn’t all smiles in the beginning. The untrained dog was destructive and fearful, even cowering at the sound of another dog eating.
“The scars on his face and ears told me the stories of what it was like living with so many dogs in such deplorable conditions,” George wrote on her dog training website.
But Smiley’s best teacher was the family’s partially deaf Great Dane, Tyler, whose happiness was infectious. “Life was grand to Tyler and soon enough that rubbed off on Smiley,” said George.
Eventually she noticed how well he interacted with groups of people and realized his destiny was therapy. Smiley now warms hearts as a service dog in Stouffville area hospitals and nursing homes.
Patients aren’t the only ones Smiley has touched. He made his mark at home. “He went on my first date, and was the ring bearer at my wedding,” George told CBS News. “He changed my life.”
“The message is, it doesn’t matter where or how a dog starts his life – he is able to overcome and become a stable, happy dog,” she wrote on her website, trainingthek9way.com. “For dogs do not dwell in the past – they only live in the moment.”
(WATCH a video of Smiley from RuptlyTV)
Photo Credit: Joanne George via Facebook / Story tip from: Kristen Johnson Elder
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