In July 2009, it looked like life was over for Nico the pit bull. Formerly a fighting dog, he was deaf and sick, and he was about to be euthanized in a Los Angeles kill shelter.
For just about everyone who knew Nico, things seemed utterly hopeless. That is, until one special person changed the poor pooch’s life.
A rescuer from an animal welfare organization called the Mutt Scouts snapped a photo of a distressed Nico in his cell pressing his head against the wall. The woman posted the photo online, and what happened afterward was nothing short of a miracle…
There are few things sadder than a dog who is abandoned, sick, or otherwise in a dangerous or unfortunate situation. No matter what kind of dog they are, they always deserve to be happy and healthy. Still, not all breeds get equal opportunities…
Pit bulls are one breed that regularly get a bad rap for being aggressive, but this notion couldn’t be further from the truth! Nico, pictured here, is the perfect example. After he was wrongly labeled as violent and aggressive, this former fighting dog was scheduled to be put down at a Los Angeles kill shelter in July 2009.
Nico’s outlook was truly bleak, but there was hope on the horizon for this poor pup. That’s because a group called the Mutt Scouts—which aims to rescue all sorts of dogs and puppies—was about to change everything.
Very little was known about Nico’s life prior to his arrival at the animal shelter. Whatever happened to him, it must have been rough; he was clearly depressed, and most people didn’t want to adopt him. His chances of surviving were almost nonexistent.
While plenty of people know the truth about pit bulls—they were bred to be “nanny” dogs for children—others purposely train them to be aggressive. Sadly, this affects the way these dogs are viewed, and Nico was suffering from those exact misconceptions. That is, until one picture changed it all…
It looked like there wasn’t any hope left for Nico. Then something incredible happened: Nikki Audet, an animal rescuer from the Mutt Scouts, was visiting the shelter when she came across this heartbreaking sight.
Nikki snapped this photograph of Nico pressing his head against the wall of his cell and she posted it online as soon as she could. Soon enough, there was an outpouring of sympathy for the sad pooch…
The image immediately caught the eye of another animal rescuer, Kelly Gibson. Once she saw the shocking photo, she decided she needed to do something—and fast. Nico had to leave that kill shelter as soon as possible if he wanted a chance at survival.
Once Kelly met Nico and she saw how sweet and loving he was, she knew that she had to do everything in her power to help him find a loving forever home. It was going to take some effort, but this innocent pup was worth it.
Money was raised to pay for medical care and 45 different people worked together to drive 19—yes, 19!—separate legs of a two-week journey in order to bring Nico to a new shelter in Indiana. And that wasn’t all…
Once in Indiana, Nico underwent successful surgery for multiple cancerous tumors on his head and back. It was discovered that he was deaf, too, so he also began special training for his disability, learning to respond to commands through a vibration collar instead of audio cues.
It wasn’t long before Nico was finally ready to be adopted into a loving forever home. Luckily, two special women named Bridgette and Melissa quickly fell in love with him and they adopted him as soon as they could!
For just about any rescue dog, the transition process from a troubled background to a more secure and permanent home could be a daunting one. Thankfully, Nico adapted to his new home life perfectly!
Despite the fact that Nico was adapting quite well to his new environment, his new feline siblings didn’t seem to be huge fans of him. He was the new guy in town, after all!
Even if the cats took a little while to accept their new dog brother into their lives, everybody absolutely loved Nico. He might have had a disability, but they were grateful for the joy he brought to their lives…
Nico also developed a new interest that other dogs often become familiar with very early in life: cuddling! He loved nothing more than to give and receive affection from even the tiniest of his new friends.
It wasn’t just members of Nico’s own family that he loved to cuddle with, either. Any time someone—be they human or dog— came to visit him, Nico loved to snuggle up with them and give them big, sloppy kisses!
As a matter of fact, Nico became so accustomed to getting constant love and attention that, by the time Bridgette and Melissa introduced them to his new sister, Brisbee, he became a little jealous. Needless to say, he took some time to warm up to her!
Nico did eventually have another major struggle to deal with, but there was a major difference this time around. Now, he had the support of a loving forever family to help fight for him…
In order to really understand just how special Nico’s story really was—and to see more of Nico loving his new life—watch the clip below. Nico once had no hope, but with help from some new friends, his entire life turned around!
This is just so sweet. It just goes to show how wrong it is to judge a book by its cover. Nico was a beautiful and loving soul all along, and all he needed was for someone to just give him a chance.