DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) - A feral dog that captured the heart of a neighborhood was shipped Thursday to a Michigan shelter, after he was minutes from being put down a day before.
"I'm so joyful," says Sharon Deis, who claimed the dog and gave it to the shelter.
The reversal was surprising after it appeared to be a final goodbye Wednesday for the dog no one could touch, but who managed to touch them.
"He would start playing with my dogs in our yard," says Sharon Deis. "He's so sweet."
To some he was Jack to others Sam, but for those in the DeWeese Ridgecrest neighborhood like Marcilina Kilby he was another friendly face.
"When I saw the dog I thought if they can get him and he's adoptable I'd like to adopt him because I lost my dog in 2004," Kilby says.
But others were fearful of the dog that wouldn't let any people near him.
"He didn't want you to touch him," says Mick Sagester with the Montgomery County Animal Resource Center. "He was always running loose."
After eight months of complaints, Animal Resource officials managed to capture Jack last week, even then it took a tranquilizer dart and a mile of tracking him.
They examined him and determined he was too wild to be put up for adoption. He was to be put down Wednesday afternoon.
Neighbors rallied to save him, bringing their dogs to visit him, starting a petition and contacting a Michigan shelter which agreed to take him.
"It sounds like this dog has had human contact and as long as they've had human contact they usually come around," says Lanie Mossey who runs Wild Dog at Mossey Hollow in Michigan.
But those at the Animal Resource Center say they didn't want to give the dog to another shelter only to have it create issues elsewhere.
"We're just taking a problem and giving it to someone else," Sagester says.
But there was still one hope left for the dog.
Someone could get it by claiming to be the owner.
Two people tried just that but declined when the dog proved to be too wild.
"We haven't even been able to put our hands on him or put him on a leash," Sagester says.
But shortly before the dog was to be put down, Sharon stepped forward to claim him.
The dog that many have labeled a survivor will get one more chance.
He was taken to the Wild Dog at Mossey Hollow in Michigan where he'll be rehabilitated. If all goes well, he'll be adopted out to someone.
"I'm comfortable with the people that are taking him to the rescue to try to rehabilitate him," Sagester says. "This one has been a happy ending."
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