In March 2017, firefighters received a call about a brush fire near a homeless camp in West Palm Beach, Florida.
Fire Rescue Captain Gregg Gordon and his team rushed over to the scene. When they got there, they came across a distressing sight: they found a severely burned guard dog tied up to a tree. The poor dog was howling in pain.
Firefighter Marcos Orozca cut the two-year-old dog’s chain and rushed him over to Jupiter Pet Emergency and Specialty Center (JPESC). The firefighters nicknamed the pup Smokey.
“The little guy was burned up pretty good.” Gordon told The Palm Beach Post. “Even when we grabbed him, he was very distressed. I was concerned whether he would live.”
The veterinarian, Dr. Latimer, rushed the pup into treatment. He found that the most severe burns were on the back of the dog’s torso and his hind legs. Dr. Latimer told the firefighters that the dog would need lots of treatment and care, but he was going to be okay.
“During the several weeks that he was with us at JPESC, Smokey received multiple blood transfusions (THANK YOU “Shadow”)!!! , daily baths and bandage/wrap changes. In addition, he received treatments in the hyperbaric chamber to help with reduction of swelling as well as pain from the multiple burns,” JPESC wrote on Facebook.
When Smokey first arrived at JPESC, the poor pup was nervous and fearful around everyone. But as time went on, the dog got more and more comfortable with the vets and nurses. The firefighters who rescued him also came to visit him, and Captain Gordon decided to foster the pup while he was recovering from his injuries.
Captain Gordon took Smokey home and introduced him to his two dogs. The pup was so happy to have new friends to play with!
About a week after Captain Gordon brought Smokey home, he took him to JPESC for a check-up. As soon as Dr. Latimer walked into the room, Smokey jumped up and gave him a hug! The dog clearly knew that Dr. Latimer had saved his life, and he wanted to thank him.
“As you can see, he is SO thankful for all of the care, love and treatments that he received during his time with us! Welcome back, Smokey!” JPESC wrote on YouTube.
Smokey also got more good news during this check-up. One of the other vets, Dr. Katelyn Thomas, had fallen in love with him. She decided to officially adopt him, and she renamed the dog Fen.
Smokey/Fen has now been with his mom for about two years. The pup loves everything about his home, and he’s still as sweet as can be. He and his mom also go on lots of adventures together, and Fen has discovered that he loves swimming.
Fen also never forgot his old friend Dr. Latimer. In 2018, Fen was the mascot for the annual Peggy Adams Walk for the Animals. Dr. Latimer was also there, and as soon as Fen saw him, he ran towards the vet and jumped into his arms!
Fen had a rough start to life, but he has now recovered from his injuries and is in a wonderful forever home! If you want to see the tear-jerking moment where Fen and Dr. Latimer reunited, check out the video below.
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