Dog who wouldn’t stop crying in shelter is all smiles on his ‘Freedom Ride’

Hogan knew his days were numbered. Stuck at a California shelter and facing imminent euthanasia, the sweet pup felt helpless. He turned into the corner of his kennel and began to shake and cry.

When staff at Ozzie and Friends Rescue heard about Hogan’s heartbreaking situation, they knew they had to help. Rescuers raced to grab him before it was too late. With Ozzie and Friends, Hogan was finally safe, but he still needed a family of his own.

As he drove away from the shelter towards freedom, Hogan was all smiles and licks, so happy to have a second chance.

For three years, Hogan waited at the rescue for someone to notice him. The playful, outdoor-loving boy was ready to find his new best friend. Unfortunately, Hogan didn’t feel comfortable around other animals, and many families felt that he wasn’t a good fit.

In 2021, Hogan was sent to live with foster mom Evelyn Perez-Benitez. Though they were meant to be a short-term pairing, as soon as Perez-Benitez met Hogan, she knew he was the one.

“I absolutely fell in love with him,” Perez-Benitez told The Dodo.

These days, Hogan, who once spent his days pacing a tiny kennel, enjoys swimming and hiking with his mom.

Perez-Benitez said being Hogan’s mom has opened her eyes to the discrimination faced by pit bulls, who are often overlooked at shelters and stereotyped as being aggressive. She’s so happy to be able to finally give Hogan the life he deserves.

Though she never expected to keep him forever, Perez-Benitez can’t imagine her life without Hogan. She’s dedicated to giving the once-desolate pup all the things he thought he’d never have.

“I do everything I can for him,” Perez-Benitez said. “I want to give him the best life possible because he is my family.”

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