When Carley Coca saw a Facebook post about three dogs that had been abandoned at a nearby church in Florida, she immediately knew she needed to help them. Coca has been helping animals since she was a child and is currently volunteering to rescue Paw Print Hearts, and never misses an opportunity to help a needy animal.
The first chance she had, Coca went to the church in het car and rescued two of the dogs, Zeus and Lily. But the third dog, Chance, refused to get close to her.
No matter what Coca tried, Chance was very afraid. He kept barking and eventually ran away. Even if it broke her heart to leave him behind, Coca knew she needed to take Zeus and Lily safely, so she left that first day without Chance.
Despite the fear, Coca knew she couldn’t give up.
After putting her two friends in foster homes, she would come back every day to try to earn Chance’s trust.
“When I finished work for the day, I went to McDonald’s, got 10 hamburgers and headed to the church, which was about 30 minutes from me,” Coca said. “I would go to the shed where Chance slept and announce that he was there – and sit at a distance (chosen by Chance) for up to three hours at a time and throw the food.”
Every time Coca tried to approach Chance, he ran away. She even tried to bring her friend Lily, and although he was excited to see her, he still refused to go anywhere near Coca.
Then, on the sixth day of trying, things started to change.
“Chance would expect me to arrive at the church sitting at the end of the driveway instead of hiding under his shed,” Coca said. “However, he hasn’t let me near him yet.”
Progress was slow, but Coca refused to give up hope – and finally, on the eighth day, Chance decided he was ready to trust her.
“When I stopped on the eighth day, Chance came running to my car,” Coca said. “I put my hand out the window and he immediately licked it. I was shocked! I got out of my car and he started wagging his tail. I knew today was the day.“
Coca slowly started to approach Chance, and this time he didn’t run away. Instead, he lay back, so she reached for him to sniff before finally trying to caress him for the first time.
“I put my hand on his head and started stroking him,” Coca said. “I was nervous how he would react; I was afraid he would bite, but he didn’t. He almost looked… relieved. I started to cry – happy tears.“
After days of trying, Coca finally managed to get Chance and put him in his car, finally ensuring his safety. The poor dog was covered in fleas, ticks and burrs, and he was matted and very thin, so Coca knew he would need time to rest and recover. After taking him to the vet, Coca drove him home to adopt him, and so far he’s settling in better than she could have imagined.
“Chance is going absolutely incredible,” Coca said. “I love to see his personality appear every day. You can tell how grateful he is for finally being safe. He is still afraid of other people, but we are working a little every day!”
Chance will stay with his new foster mother for at least three months and after that she will help him find a home forever.
Source: The Dodo