He arrived with two little hind stumps. He was a feisty little guy, squirmy, energetic, and his tail never stopped wagging. This little brown puppy was a survivor.
He was saved twice from an almost certain death.
In his first brush, two boys hung him over a fence as bait for another dog. The dog ripped off parts of his hind limbs: the majority of his left hind leg, then the foot of his right leg, leaving a mangled stump. Witnesses later grabbed the tiny brown puppy and took him to the shelter. Once there, they re-told the shocking story of what they witnessed, but pleaded to remain anonymous.
The shelter that should have been his safe haven and the beginning of his new life was actually his second brush with death. Because the shelter was in a city with breed specific legislation, it has a no-adopt policy on pit bull type dogs and euthanizes nearly all who come through its doors.
Had it not been for the efforts of some of the shelter staff, a local bully breed rescue, and the people who risked everything to save him from the men who so cruelly and intentionally tortured this tiny little dog, he would not have been long for this world.
He was only four weeks old. He weighed less than ten pounds.
While it took months to get his health into a manageable state, the little brown puppy quickly adapted to life with only two front feet. He braved every obstacle, cuddled and played with his new brothers and sisters-still, all the while, his tail never stopped wagging. His strength, courage and tenacity called for a strong name – “Leonidas.”
His namesake, King Leonidas of Sparta, stood against impossible odds at the battle of Thermopylae. Seriously outmanned by the Persians, King Leonidas and his soldiers sacrificed their lives to cover the retreat of the rest of the Greek army. His courage and resolution helped the Greeks to live and fight another day, and may have saved the very existence of a fledgling idea in the world at the time – democracy. This puppy certainly deserved a strong name from a strong man.
No one has ever been held accountable for what they did to Leo.
Read about Leo now: Leonidas