[As with many animal rescue stories, some of these contain accounts of neglect and/or violence re: the circumstances from which the animal/s were rescued.]
Morieka Johnson: Retired Greyhounds Win Writer's Heart.
Life With Cats: Viral Photo Gets Kids a Pet and Gives Shelter Cat a Home
Rusty Ray: Robeson County Woman Gives Sanctuary to Blind Cats.
Morieka Johnson: Boxers Get Forever Homes.
Life With Dogs: After Waiting Three Years for a Family That Would Never Come Back, Chen Gets a New Home.
And finally: The best video ever. Maybe.
Video Description: Piano music. A young beige man, with tattooed arms and piercings, wearing a Humane Society t-shirt, sits on a couch playing with a tiny chihuahua, whose jaw has been damaged, so its tongue is hanging out. Text Onscreen: "Humane Heroes: Adam & Billy."
In voiceover, Adam says, "I'm Adam Parascandola, and I'm a member of the Animal Rescue Team." Cut to footage of Adam and other members of the Humane Society's Animal Rescue Team at a run-down backyard breeding operation.
Alternating between voiceover over footage of the deplorable conditions at the puppy mill and speaking onscreen, he continues: "The first part of the story takes place in Jones County, North Carolina. Uh, we responded there to assist with a puppy mill. You know, we do so many of these puppy mill raids, and what we saw here was pretty typical of what we see everywhere—just a complete disregard for their emotional or physical health."
The dogs are in tiny, dirty crates throughout a house and several out-buildings. They bark for attention. They are in bad fucking shape. As the team begins to rescue them, Adam continues: "So, one of the buildings on the property was what looked to be a small shed, and I at first thought it was just a storage shed." There are dogs in cages all piled up in the shed. "The smell was just horrendous in there." On footage of the rescue, the rescuers observe that the water in dispensers attached to the cages is green.
Adam continues: "I immediately saw a cage with a small chihuahua in it." It's Billy! He looks terrible. "And I went to try to open the cage, and the latch was actually rusted shut." Footage of Adam trying to open the rusted cage. Billy paces in the cage. "This was his whole life. Really, I don't think he'd come out of that cage in years. What little food and water he had was probably just given through the bars."
Footage of Adam, having busted the cage open, reaching in gingerly for Billy. He holds Billy to his chest, carefully supporting him. "His whole bottom jaw, I mean, at least half of it, was missing." Billy licks Adam's face. "I mean, he was just—he was just a skeleton under his long fur."
On the footage of the rescue, a female veterinarian ranks Billy's body condition score as 1, the lowest possible ranking.
Adam continues in voiceover over footage of him petting Billy in his cage during the rescue, "All of the dogs that we get out of these rescue efforts, they want and need love and attention. But, when I got this little guy out," over footage of Adam holding Billy, "he laid his head on my shoulder, and, at that moment, I felt responsible for him." On camera: "And I felt responsible for making sure that he was never gonna have to suffer like that again."
Happy music. Footage of Adam and Billy at the rescue effort. Adam isn't letting Billy go. Billy looks pretty damn happy about that. Cut to Billy, all clean and filled out, running around on a rug on a living room floor. He is silly and joyful. Adam says, "You know, this little guy, despite all he'd been through, really very quickly his whole personality came out," over footage of Adam playing with Billy with a ball, "and, you know, it was so wonderful to be able to see what a character he is." Adam puts his head down, and Billy bumps his head against it and kisses Adam.
Cut to Adam sitting on the couch, petting Billy and smiling. "Meet Billy." He laughs. Billy's tongue hangs out. He is so evidently a happy dog. "He makes me laugh every single day. Um, I just love—I just love him." Billy licks Adam's hand, and Adam smiles.
In his workspace, Adam touches a picture that's hung up of the moment he rescued Billy and Billy laid his head on Adam's shoulder, then cuddles Billy. "Please be a hero for the animals. Make a special gift to support rescues like this, and all of the work that we do."