Phoenix is our “second chance at life and rising from the ashes” puppy mill dog from Ohio.
Phoenix arrived very shut down and afraid of everything because he had no life experience beyond a cage. During the time he has been with us, we’ve seen him slowly open up and become more trusting. His two favorite activities are fetching and receiving belly rubs. Living with him is like having a toddler who never puts his toys away – his foster family’s living room is always littered with at least 15 dog toys. The minute the dog in his foster family (her name is Molly) picks up a toy, Phoenix becomes obsessed with getting it; thankfully Molly doesn’t mind when he takes a toy from her. Understandably, Phoenix has a bit of FOMO (fear of missing out) and if Molly is getting attention he asks to join in on the love.
He is shy and timid and needs an adopter who already has a dog to mentor him because he instinctively likes other dogs and tends to mimic their behavior. His adopters also need to be dedicated to letting Phoenix set the pace as he learns how to be a dog. So far, Phoenix has yet to go on a walk around the neighborhood. He also gets spooked by new stuff like wind and backpacks. With time we have seen him become comfortable with “normal” house activities/sounds such as a beeping microwave, closing cabinets, pulling out a chair, unloading a dishwasher, and sneezing so we know eventually wind and backpacks will no longer scare him. Phoenix still hasn’t ventured into a bedroom or bathroom in his foster home – he’ll look inside those rooms, but isn’t comfortable enough to explore them. He has zero interest in the front yard, but he does make use of the back yard for his bathroom breaks. Phoenix’s world was so sheltered for his first two years that we’re surprised and excited about the progress he’s made so far. He gets braver every day and he is starting to become curious about things he sees and smells. This is huge considering he acted more like a bump on a log than a dog when he first arrived.
Phoenix is a very special boy, who has a lot of potential and a lot of love to give. He has come a long way from his cage, but he still has a long way to go. He needs someone who will help him be brave, and who will celebrate every tiny step he takes. He needs someone who will love him unconditionally, and who will never give up on him. If you are that someone and you have another dog, Phoenix will reward you with a lifetime of incredible trust and loyalty. He will be your faithful companion, your best friend, and your biggest fan. Phoenix is waiting for you. Will you be his hero?