The Back Story
Taz was rescued by a sheriff after a neighbor had called animal control. He had been tied to a tree and left to starve. He’d been abused and severely neglected over a long period of time. After the sheriff cut him loose he was taken to a shelter and kept for a little while, but the shelter was full so they had to move him. The animal control officer drove him to several other shelters but no-one would take him until his last stop at Pet Network Humane Society in Incline Village, Lake Tahoe. At first they said no due to overcrowding but once the director visited Taz in the truck and he lifted his big ‘ol pittie head to give some kisses, they couldn’t turn him away.
Over the next couple months Taz became the favorite and they spent extra time with him while helping him rehab. If not for them he would have been euthanized due to his condition and not having a place to go. No words can express how thankful I am for them taking him in and helping him recover.
When I first saw Taz online he looked pitiful, no pun intended. An old dog behind glass that looked like he’d been through a lot. I thought for sure no-one would want him. We looked at other dogs, but for some reason I kept going back to that picture and knew we had to go see him. When I first walked into his room at the shelter I kneeled on one knee and he came right over, pushed in against me to sit down and lifted his head to give some kisses. Right then we got a new dog.
For me, the most incredible part to all of this is that Taz has absolutely no reason to like a human. He has absolutely no reason to trust anyone. But he does and he does it with all of his big pitbull heart. It’s amazing to see and to be around. It’s amazing to see how happy he is. When you walk into a room his face lights up and his tail starts going. As soon as you move in the morning you can hear his tail hitting the floor. He follows me from room to room and if I head towards the door his eyes are locked onto me to see if he gets to go. We’ve had little kids over and Taz just stood there while one of them was running his truck up and down his back. He’s great with the little dogs and greets everyone with a tail wag and most likely a big lick.
How an animal could be so abused and still have so much love is beyond me. It’s hard to have a bad day when you see his big happy face in the morning. If he’s not complaining about life then how can I? He’s an inspiration. He has a presence about him that draws people to him wherever we go. I was a bit nervous getting him out at first because of peoples perception of a big pitbull, and not knowing how he would do. That quickly changed the first time that I took him to Home Depot and couldn’t make it down an isle without getting stopped by someone. My wife finally said, “I’m gonna have to go shop while you talk to people, we’re never gonna get out of here.” Everyone wants to hear about him and his story. Instead of people seeing a banged up pitbull they see a big teddy bear and even little kids will come up and give him a hug.
When Taz was taken in he had been so starved that he was literally skin and bones. He had no muscles left and I don’t know how he could even stand up. The sheet from his first vet check says that he was 60 pounds but I was told that he had been considerably less than that. Right now he is passing 90 but still doesn’t have the muscle along his back and hind end like he should. He’s eating well and we take long walks to help him rebuild slowly. I think that we can get another 15-20 pounds on him and he’ll still be all muscle, fit and feeling fab. I can tell that he already has much more energy than when we brought him and each day gets better.
Very soon Taz will get to go on his first camping trip. I’ve tried to ease him into more activities and now he’s ready. We’ll do a shorter trip and then we have a longer RV trip planned for 4th of July week that we are all very anxious to take him on. Little by little!
On June 29th Taz will be honored at the 21st Annual Fur Ball, a fund raising gala in Incline Village, Lake Tahoe put on by Pet Network Humane Society. Pet Network Humane Society rescues adoptable animals from euthanasia, connects abandoned animals with loving families, instills respect for animals through humane education, and enhances lives through animal companionship. We are very much looking forward to Taz being a part of the evening and having his story told.
Taz is more than I could ever have asked for. I was hoping for a big dog that would fit well into our family and he’s done much more that that. He’s just what we needed, just what I needed.